Thailand: Military makes threats against pro-democracy Red Shirts

[Thousands of Red Shirts commemorate the April-May 2010 killings of pro-democracy protesters by military forces.]
By Giles Ji Ungpakorn, Red Thai Socialist
April 12, 2011 -- One year after Thailand's military gunned down nearly 90 pro-democracy civilians in Bangkok and in the run-up to the promised first election since the 2006 coup, the military have been very active in increasing the obstacles to a free and fair election. They are seriously worried about the outcome of this election.

Afghan feminist: ‘Kill team’ photos reveal truth of occupation

[Image: Malalai Joya.]
By Malalai Joya
April 10, 2011 -- The disgusting and heartbreaking photos published in March by the media are finally bringing the grisly truth about the war in Afghanistan to a wider public.
All the PR about this war being about democracy and human rights melts into thin air with these pictures of US soldiers posing with the dead and mutilated bodies of innocent Afghan civilians.
I must report that Afghans do not believe this be a story of a few rogue soldiers. We that is part and parcel of the entire military occupation.

Philippine Airlines workers shut down terminal

[Protest in support of Philippine Airlines workers, April 1. Photo by Tony Iltis.]
By Tony Iltis, Green Left Weekly
April 10, 2011 -- More than 1000 Philippine Airlines (PAL) ground staff from the Philippine Airlines Employees Association (PALEA) staged a torch-lit rally on April 1 between terminals at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
The protest was supported by several big labour federations. The union representing flight attendants has also pledged solidarity with PALEA.
When police blocked the march, workers blocked a major road for several hours. This disrupted access to the airport and lead to flights being cancelled or delayed.

South Korea: Mass arrests, raids of leftists

By Roddy Quines, Green Left Weekly, Seoul
April 10, 2011 -- Three former members of the left-wing student group Capitalism Research Society (CRC) were taken into police custody on March 21.
Among those arrested was the group’s former president Choi Ho-hyeon. They were charged under the National Security Act, a draconian anti-communist law that was enacted in 1948 during the height of bloody right-wing suppressions of popular grassroots democratic movements.

West Papua: Anthropologist says latest killing reflects pattern

April 8, 2011 -- Radio New Zealand International -- An anthropologist who has conducted extensive research on deadly incidents around Papua’s Grasberg gold and copper mine says the latest shootings near the mine must be seen within a history of impunity.

Reports from Indonesia say that unidentified gunmen killed two workers at Freeport-McMoran Copper and Gold Inc’s giant gold mine in Papua province yesterday.

Australia’s deadly refugee system

[Photo: Alex Bainbridge.]
By Jay Fletcher, Green Left Weekly
April 3, 2011 -- At the Bali Process summit held on March 30, immigration minister Chris Bowen and foreign affairs minister Kevin Rudd signed a “regional framework to prevent people smuggling” with 41 nations.
But they failed to bully East Timor into agreeing to an Australian detention centre on its soil.

Australian gov’t sends Afghan refugees back to danger


By Jim McIllroy, Green Left Weekly
April 3, 2011, Brisbane-- The Australian government recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the government of Afghanistan and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
It permitted the forcible deportation of Afghan refugees — including children separated from their families — from Australia back to Afghanistan.

Australian Nurses Federation demands release of jailed West Papuan nurses

By Kerry Smith, Green Left Weekly
April 3, 2011 -- The Australian Nursing Federation (ANF) issued a statement on March 29 calling for the immediate release of five West Papuan nurses who have been arrested and jailed by the Indonesian government for taking part in industrial action.

Papua New Guinea: Villagers Deeply Concerned About Ramu Acid Spill

[The Ramu processing plant, on the edge of Basamuk Bay in Papua New Guinea.]
March 17, 2011, Intercontinental Cry -- In early March, a "serious chemical spill" was reported at the site of the Ramu mine processing plant, which sits on the edge of Basamuk Bay in Papua New Guinea.
According to initial reports, the incident occurred on March 3, "while a cargo ship was unloading a chemical substance into storage tanks on the shore at the refinery site," says Papua New Guinea Mine Watch, who noted the incident on their website on March 8.

Papua New Guinea: Say no to World Bank sponsored sweat-shops

Mar 24, 2011, EngageMedia -- Papua New Guinea group, ActNow, is calling the public to send a message to the World Bank, through its subsidiary the International Finance Corporation, on their role in the Special Economic Zones legislation.