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The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain


National News

Living Wage Week

by New Worker correspondents

READERS may not have noticed but this week was Living Wage Week, an excuse for the Living Wage Foundation (LWF) to award itself some brownie points. On Monday the Foundation produced a report that was the equivalent of announcing that the Pope was a Roman Catholic.

It stated that about 4.8 million, or one in six of Britain’s workers, are earning less that its Real Living Wage. This it claims is significant improvement on last year’s figure of 5.4 million or a fifth of the British workforce. The main reason for this decline is simply the high levels of unemployment in those low-paid sectors such as hospitality and retail, which were particularly badly hit by the pandemic.

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The Wages Fight

by New Worker correspondents

Trade union density is currently less than half it was when Margaret Thatcher came to power. Getting organised is the only effective way of dealing with low pay. Depending on image conscious businesspeople or charity careerists and trade union bureaucrats is no solution, it depends solely on active fighting trade union branches. When the minimum wage was introduced in the early years of the Blair regime as a sop to workers, the New Communist Party warned that it would soon become the maximum wage – we can take no pride in being proven broadly correct on that point.

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Scottish Political News

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

WHILST the Westminster bubble has been shaken by all sorts of sleaze allegations involving second jobs and the awarding of contracts to cronies a similar saga has been rocking Holyrood.

Holyrood was once the grazing ground for loyal has-beens when Labour ruled the roost. Now the tables have turned. Scottish Labour business manager Neil Bibby claims that some Tory MSPs see their Holyrood job of “serving the people as a part-time hobby” when noting that seven Tory MSPs and one SNP member had second jobs.

His attack was not entirely successful because

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Council Capers

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent

The West Highland Free Press, the Skye-based local newspaper which also serves the nearby Western Isle, has put the boot into the SNP minority on the Western Isles council where 22 of its 31 members are ‘Independents’. Its reporter on the once Labour- but now SNP-supporting weekly, Keith Mackenzie, who has been reporting the council for five years, has observed of the present six SNP members that “their notion of ‘serving the public’ and ‘working together in the interests of the Western Isles’ is as far removed from their day-to-day ethos as Jeff Bezos is from Neil Armstrong”.

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English cricket rocked by charges of racism

by Chris Summers

THE CHAIR of Yorkshire Cricket Club, Roger Hutton, has resigned following claims of racist bullying from several players of Pakistani origin.

Former player Azeem Rafiq fought back tears on Tuesday as he told MPs about the racist bullying he suffered over the years whilst playing for Yorkshire Cricket Club.

Rafiq, 30, told Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee that racist language was “constantly” used at Yorkshire.

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Solidarity in Spain

by New Worker correspondent

KOREAN Friendship Association (KFA) activists gathered in Spain last weekend for an international meeting of the KFA in sunny Barcelona, which is Spain’s second largest city and the capital of the autonomous region of Catalonia. The meeting took place in a community centre, run by the Communist Party of the People of Spain (PCPE), in a working-class area of the city.

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Remember their sacrifice

by New Worker correspondent

COMRADES and friends joined diplomats and local dignitaries in honouring the fallen at Sunday’s Remembrance Day at the Soviet War Memorial in the park that surrounds the Imperial War Museum – the first public ceremony at the monument since the beginning of the Covid lockdowns last year.

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International News

Nicaragua elections a defeat for US empire

by Jim Byrne

FOR A SMALL, largely agricultural country, Nicaragua has delivered several losses to the much larger, more militarily advanced US empire. From Augusto Sandino’s peasant army expelling the US marines in the 1930s, to the Sandinista Revolution of 1979 that toppled the American-backed Somoza dictatorship, to the electoral return of the Sandinistas in 2006, to the defeat of the US-co-ordinated soft coup attempt in 2018, the 2021 elections are another win for people of Nicaragua.

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Union strikes Amazon in Germany

by John Catalinotto

SOME 2,500 Amazon workers went out on strike in Germany for one to three days starting on 1st November to press demands for an increase in wages. By 2nd November seven of Amazon’s 17 warehouses – or “fulfilment centres” as Amazon management calls them – were affected by the strike. The workers are members of Verdi, the country’s second largest trade union.

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On the edge of the abyss

by Guillermo Alvarado

THE TERRIBLE situation in Haiti, the most impoverished country in the American continent, worsened during the week ending today due to the actions of gangs that have under their control large areas of Port-au-Prince, the capital, and other cities in the interior.

These armed groups terrorise the population and further deteriorate the quality of life, already damaged by misery, natural phenomena, the interference of foreign powers and the incapacity of local authorities to face these problems.

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Features

Xinjiang: a manhunt in the mountains

by Wang Wenwen and Fan Lingzhi

“I’M LUCKY to be alive” said Dilxat Mutallip, a Xinjiang police officer who was almost shot dead by a terrorist during a manhunt.

The dazzling sunshine in late September shines upon the craggy foothills of the Tianshan Mountains. The unique natural landscape is undoubtedly attractive to hikers but to Xinjiang police officers who have shed blood on the land they love, the place carries special significance.

Dilxat still remembers every detail of the hard-won battles against the brutal terrorists in 2015. Eventually, a total of 28 terrorists were killed and one surrendered. During the manhunt, 11 civilians and five police officers were killed, and 18 were injured.

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Kellogg’s workers still on “Strrr-ike!”

by Martha Grevatt

TONY the Tiger’s famous line – “Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes, they’re “grrr-eat” – has been reworked. Lawn signs supporting the strike of 1,400 Kellogg’s workers show an angry Tony with a picket sign saying “Kellogg’s on strrr-ike!”.

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The world mobilises in favour of Cuba

by María Josefina Arce

THE USA maintains unalterable the economic, commercial and financial blockade and intensifies its destabilising actions against Cuba, but the world increases its solidarity and mobilises to accompany Cubans in the defence of their sovereignty and their right to build a better future for all its citizens.

Last Saturday and for the following three days, solidarity campaigners in cities around the world held public events, caravans of cars and bicycles, and mobilisations in the main streets and squares.

The support to the Cuban people will also be reflected in social networks, from which a discrediting campaign against the largest of the Antilles is being developed, as authorities have repeatedly denounced.

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