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The Aladdin Sisalem True Survivor Story

06.04.2004 05:44

Aladdin Sisalem confined alone on Manus Island Lombrum Detention Centre on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea, 2004: Predestined to refugee status by the political circumstances of his birth in Kuwait to a Palestinian father and an Egyptian mother, 25 year old Aladdin Sisalem (Weblog) now sits in solitary confinement on an island that costs the Australian Government almost as much in bad public relations as it does in money (Keeping the centre open for him is costing Australian taxpayers Aus$23,000 a day). The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) granted Sisalem refugee status. But Australian Minister for Immigration, Amanda Vanstone, has 'justified' the Government's action by stating that Sisalem did not ask for the proper form by name although he repeatedly asked for protection and asylum in Australia, when in the Australian Migration Zone. Mandatory, indefinite Detention by the Australian Government has been called a Crime Against Humanity by respected barrister Julian Burnside (full speech & legal argument).

While thousands flocked to a Palm Sunday Rally in Melbourne for Refugee justice, State of Emergency has published a critique of the current refugee movement, arguing that they fail to recognise what is the true cause of the current crisis. The very concept of State sovereignty is the cause for the current incarceration of asylum seekers, rather than the lack of good will from the leaders of this country.

[Free Aladdin | Petition | XBORDER | noborder network | Melbourne IMC on Borders]



Turning point in the Ageeb case

justic, 04.04.2004 17:20

The german case against three federal border officials involved in the death of a deportee has burst open. On a Monday, the eleventh day of deliberations, the Frankfurt court decided to refer the case of Aamir Ageeb, who died while being deported to Sudan, to a higher authority. The new case will be held in the judicial chamber of the district court. The justification given by the sitting Judge, Ralph Henrici, is that there exist circumstances which mean the accused could be found guilty of causing death by severe injury. Up until this point, they could only be found guilty of causing death by negligence.

[Image: By bending the torso, the hands are pressed into the pit of the stomach and the chin of the helmet is pressed into the cushion. Breathing would be cut off completely.]

Amir Ageeb | indy.de | more images



Philippine Transportation Strike

03.04.2004 14:02

Transportation Strike Supporters March Faced with increasing costs the Philippine transportation workers held a one day strike March 30th to demand fare increases. The strike was able to shutdown 85-97 percent of public transport in the routes in the strike areas. Despite media distortion the strike was widely supported by the commuting public. The transportation workers were demanding that government regulators raise fare limits to account for increased fuel costs and inflation. Read more at indymedia Quezon City.



Freedom for the comrades detained in Salta, Argentina.

rabble, 02.04.2004 15:23

At 10pm last night Pablo Indio, indymedia activist, and Ava Guarní community leader Horacio Guzmán were freed.

More Information: [in spanish]
Solidarity from Bolivia + Wayruro Solidarity+ Solidarity from The Platform + Solidarity from Barrios de Pie + Update from the Ava Guaraní community + Update from the Partido Obrero- Orán + IMC Italia + Reclamo por la lIbertad de Horacio y Pablo + Solidarity with the jailed + Clajadep se Solidariza + Solidarity + Solidaridad Ojo Obrero + Comunicado de Telam + Audio de Comunicación telefonica con la Comisaria de Orán



Australian University Students protest Fee increases

02.04.2004 08:10

Student protest in Melbourne occupies RMIT Vice Chancellors Office University Students around Australia protested impending plans to increase HECS (Higher Education Contribution Scheme) fees by up to 25 per cent in a day of national action on 31 March. This is part of the conservative Federal Howard Government plan of winding back access to University Education.

In Melbourne 1,500 students marched through the streets, and up to 100 students invaded and occupied the Vice Chancellor's office of the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) (Photos 1, 2, 3). In Sydney students from universities converged on the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) and attempted to confront the Vice Chancellor about the impending fees increase. Instead, they were met with an unnecessary and heavy-handed police reaction, with pepper spray being used indiscriminately and without warning on shocked and unsuspecting students (photos. Brisbane Students staged a Sit-Down at an Intersection To Stop HECS Increase. A nation-wide electronic sit-in held before the protests had mixed success.

[Melbourne IMC | Sydney IMC | Brisbane IMC | Perth IMC]



URGENT: Pablo Indio ((i)) and Horacio Guzman in jail

01.04.2004 22:16

The journalist and member of Indymedia Argentina, Pablo Badano,was deteined today in Oran in the province of Salta in the North of Argentina. Pablo Badano is also known as Pablo Indio, because he uses that name to sign his reports about the situation of the indigenous people.

Pablo was making a coverage during a demonstration were the Indigenous Comunity "Estación el Tabacal" and other Guarani comunities were protesting against the Seabord Corporataion, a US company.

Pablo was arrested togehter with Horacio Guzmán, a member of the ava guarani comunity, when they were talking at the end of the demonstration.

All the witnesses say that there were no incidents, not before or during the arrest. Both Pablo Badano and Horacio Guzmán are in this moment (17:30 local time) still arrested and without contact to the outside. The police says that is to make a research on them.

Please call (+54) 03878 421024 , the Police Station of Orán, Argentina, to ask about the situation of ours comrades.

Thank you for your solidarity.

[More information: IMC Argentina]



April Fools / Poisson d’Avril!

01.04.2004 22:03

Don't panic! Contrary to recent reports, Indymedia is NOT in talks with CBS/Viacom. Anti-GE activists have NOT bought Monsanto, Corsica will NOT become a detention center, and the 1st of May has NOT been removed from the calendar! Much less fortunately, Bush and Cheney are still in office in the United States.

These prank articles were posted in celebration of what is known across Europe and the United States as April Fools Day. On this day, it is common for people to play jokes on their friends, usually by telling outrageous stories or performing stunts that are punctuated by the exclamation: April Fools! (Or in France, Poisson d'Avril, "April's Fish!")

While the choice of day is limited to certain countries, the concept itself is a cross-cultural phenomenon. The same tradition is celebrated in Spain and across Latin America on December 28, "El Dia de los inocentes." Some trace the holiday back to the ancient festival of Holi, celebrated since ancient times by Hindu cultures on the first full moon of March. Others draw connections with the concept of carnival-festivals in which the usual social order is turned upside-down. This is seen as a reminder that none one, particularly those in power, should take themselves too seriously all the time.

As the humorist Mark Twain writes: "The first of April is the day we remember what we are the other 364 days of the year."



Police Murder Unarmed Person of Color

30.03.2004 20:27

On Sunday March 28th, just after 5pm PST, two Portland police officers stopped James Perez for a traffic violation, in a neighbourhood traditionally "money-poor" but rich in spirit. A traffic violation generally is a small fine, this time it resulted in death, without trial, judge, or jury. Soon after the murder, portland indymedia readers began their own investigation of the crime and the officers involved.

James Perez, a person of color, was shot in his car multiple times by a police handgun, and at least once by a police tazer, it hasnt been confirmed if the officers attempted to use "less-lethal" weapons before opening fire. Apparently Perez was asked to exit his vehicle and was unbuckling his seat belt when one officer, Jason Sery, opened fire.

This is not the first public police murder in Portland, in the recent past two other highly publicized murders occured. The Portland Police shot and murdered Kendra James one year ago, and Jose Mejia Poot two years ago. All victims were people of color. So far no officer related murders have resulted in any serious punishement of the murderers.

RELATED: 15 Hours Later | Rose City Cop Watch | Portland Cop Watch | Kendra james Video (download)



Stealing the Commons - the commodification of water

29.03.2004 05:23

Water Not Profit Consumer activists and organizations in the Philippines have condemned the bailout agreement between the wealthy Lopez clan and the government. Together with the French water giant Suez, Lopez-owned Benpres is controlling Maynilad, one of the two private concessionaires that are distributing water in Metro Manila since the privatization of the service in 1997. While the company has raised water rates by 226 percent and both Benpres and Suez have milked the company dry, Maynilad accumulated a debt of P8 billion to the government. Under the current bailout agreement, the government will not collect these unpaid concession fees and assume almost P11 billion in outstanding obligations of the near-bankrupt company in exchange for shares. While this deal obviously favors Benpres and Suez instead of the consumers, the latter will have to bear a new rate increase of 32 percent.

Around the world there are struggles against Corporate control of local water services and control of water resources: Argentina; Cochabamba, Bolivia; Grenoble, France; New Delhi, India; Jakarta, Indonesia; Papakura, New Zealand; South Africa; Michigan and Stockton, in the USA; to name but a few.

[ Operation Water Rights (including Corporate Profiles) | Water Justice |
Philippine Water Vigilance Network | Public Citizen |Reclaim the Commons ]



Critical Mass cyclists say goodbye to Tooker Gomberg

29.03.2004 04:37

Tooker Gomberg - cyclist Critical Mass cyclists took to the streets of Canadian cities in memorial and celebration of environmentalist, cycling and social justice activist Tooker Gomberg. Described by Ottawa Indymedia as "One of Canada's most daring and courageous political figures, Tooker was a friend, co-conspirator and guiding light to so many of us. A selfless trailblazer, Tooker's absence will be felt in Canada's environmental, labour, social justice, human rights, arts and music communities - and around the world. We invite you to join in reflection, mourning and celebration of such an exemplary writer, activist, politician, videographer and comedian."

IMC Reports: Vancouver, Maritmes, Hamilton, Alberta, Victoria)

[Greenspiration | Angela Bischoff's eulogy | Memorial Forum]



26.000 to be deported from the Netherlands

28.03.2004 02:33

Dutch government defends deportation policy with intimidation and repression.
The Dutch gouvernment plans to pass a bill to allow a massive deportation of 26.000 asylum seekers, while only a tiny number of asylum seekers received a permit to stay in the Netherlands. Ever since this proposal, a wave of protest actions flooded the country and international organisations like Human Rights Watch condemn the policy as it would violate international standards and create dangerous situations for refugees.

In the series of actions that started at the end of Januari, a protest was planned at the detention centre of Zestienhoven near Rotterdam on Sunday the 21st of March. The demonstration was announced in due form and security issues were discussed with the local authorities. In spite of that, the local authorities illegally decided to forbid all protests, not only around Zestienhoven but in the whole city of Rotterdam.

A major police blockade was set up around the city. Two busses were stopped, all passengers were checked for id and illegaly photographed. Four people were arrested. All cars on their way to Zestienhoven were stopped, the people in the cars were questionned and photographed. They had to provide "a really good reason" to be let through. Public transport was stopped, all passengers were taken of those busses to be indentified and photographed as well. Protestors tried to walk back to the trainstation in a demonstration, but they were forbidden and forced back on a bus back to the city. Three police cars followed the bus all the way back to the trainstation that was swarming with cops too. Only a small alternative protest in front of the Bijlmer prison, which has a deportation section, in Amsterdam was allowed.

Photo's: [1] | [2] | [3] | [4] | [5] | [6] | [Audio]



Climate Change 'Greater Threat Than Terrorism', Says Professor

27.03.2004 09:54

Quo vadis? Professor Tony McMichael, from the Australian National University's Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health, says world weather patterns are becoming more unstable and will get worse. "We've got to recognise there's an international stand-off when it comes to signing (the) Kyoto (Protocol), Australia's not signing Kyoto, that's a disgraceful decision by Canberra," he said. Professor McMichael is a member of an international policy initiative launched on March 16 to address the threat of global climate change.

He joins Tony Blair's chief scientist in criticism of those who will not sign the agreement. Sir David King launched a withering attack on US President George W. Bush in January.

Climate change will affect our health, as detailed in reports such as 'Human Health and Climate Change in Oceania'

[How global warming may cause the next Ice Age | Rising Tide Climate Justice Network | The discovering of Global Warming]



Bush Ship of State Hits Iceberg - Republicans Jumping Ship

global features, 24.03.2004 05:00

neverbush The Bush regime has taken another serious hit after former White House counterterrorism coordinator, Richard Clarke became the latest insider to reveal just how dishonestly the present administration behaved both before and after 9/11. Clarke's credentials are impeccable. He served under seven U.S. presidents and worked inside the White House for former president, George H.W. Bush, president Bill Clinton, and, of course, George W. Bush. Mr.Clarke stated pointedly in a newly released book that the Bush regime had "a plan from day one that they wanted to do something about Iraq. And while the World Trade Centre was still smoldering, while they were still digging bodies out, people at the White House were thinking, 'This gives us the opportunity we've been looking for to go after Iraq'." Presently, the Bush regime's minions are fanning out around the corporate media with yet more deception in a frantic attempt at damage repair.



Israel Assassinates Hamas Leader

global features, 23.03.2004 05:00

funeral of Yassin Declaring that the gates of hell have been opened, Hamas militants are vowing revenge on Israel and it's U.S. benefactors for the assassination of Hamas founder and political leader, Sheikh Ahmed Yassin as he left the mosque following morning prayers. In addition to Yassin, 7 Palestinian civilians, including 3 of Sheikh Yassin’s bodyguards, were killed and 17 others injured, including two of Sheikh Yassin's sons. According to The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights "at approximately 05:20 on Monday morning, Israeli helicopter gunships launched 3 missiles at Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, 66, an elderly disabled man, after he had left the Islamic Association Mosque in the densely populated al-Sabra neighborhood in the center of Gaza city, after the dawn payer. Sheikh Yassin was traveling on his wheelchair accompanied by 3 bodyguards, when one of the missiles directly hit Sheikh Yassin and his bodyguards. The other two missiles exploded in the surrounding area and killed 4 other civilians."



Fifty two activists arrested under Apartheid law

22.03.2004 11:40

Arrest at water meter protest in Phiri, Soweto, Sept 2003 On March 21 police opened fire with stun grenades on members of the Gauteng Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) who were protesting against water privatisation and the installation of pre-paid water meters. Fifty-two APF members were arrested, including 6 children, on charges of violating the Gatherings Act. This Act is a piece of law dating from the Apartheid era which gives police broad powers to ban or otherwise interfere with legitimate protest action. Increasing censorship and use of apartheid laws are being used to suppress dissent and social activism in South Africa according to the International Freedom Of Expression eXchange.

This follows the formation of the coalition against water privatisation in South Africa and protests against prepaid water meters in Phiri, Soweto, in September 2003 (Photos). With South Africans elections due April 14th, the struggles continue in South Africa, even as the corporate media encourages the belief that the ANC has brought happiness and freedom to its people.

South Africa IMC | Water Privatisation | Blue Gold - The global water crisis



M20 Protests All Around The World

IMC Features Collective, 21.03.2004 02:48

Millions have rallied all around the globe, both on March 19, the actual anniversary of the invasion, as well as March 20--the anniversary of worldwide protests against the war.

In Iraq, a demonstration took place in Baghdad in tandem with protests around the world against the violence of the occupation. The protest was also a powerful show of unity between Sunni and Shia muslims. The marches started with the Shias in Khadamiya, and the Sunnis across the river in Adamiya. The two groups met just as the Shias came over the bridge, and emotions were high as they merged into one. Then together they walked to a public square where speakers denounced the occupation and called for unity between all Iraqis.

Protest Coverage Around the World:

Compilation of Reports from Arkansas-Indymedia
Photos/Numbers from 80+ protests from Germany-Indymedia

Live streaming audio from the streets:

[Chicago IMC (signed off) | Portland IMC | Washington, DC IMC (signed off) | Enemy Combatant Radio (still broadcasting) (SF-Bay Indymedia)] | More Radio Streams



Thousands rally in M20 anti-war protests across Oceania

20.03.2004 17:53

M20 antiwar protest in Melbourne Although turnouts were not as great as the February 2003 massive rallies against war, thousands of people across Oceania have participated in anti-war protests and peace marches to mark the first anniversary of the invasion of Iraq. Protests occured around Aotearoa and included an anti-Occupation Action in Wellington (speech,Photos 1,2), a protest in Auckland (Photos 1), a protest and flag buring in Christchurch and many more smaller protests.

In Australia, several thousand people protested in both Melbourne (Report, Photos), and Sydney (Report). A thousand people rallied in Brisbane, 200 in Perth, and smaller protests in Canberra and Hobart and other regional centres. Adelaide held a protest on Sunday (Photos).

In the Philippines a Candlelight protest was held on Friday night and a further protest in Manila on Saturday where over 1000 people were attacked by fire hoses (Photos). More than fifty East Timorese people and a number of internationals protested in Dili outside the US Embassy in regard to the occupation of Iraq.

Other protests occurred in Tokyo, Japan where organisers estimated 30,000 people protested the Japanese involvement in sending members of the Self Defence Force to Iraq. In Seoul, Korea about 1,500 mostly young college students staged a peaceful anti-war demonstration. In Thailand, dozens of people protested in front of the American and British embassies in the capital Bangkok, protesting the deployment of 450 Thai troops in Iraq. Demonstrations also occurred in Hong Kong, and in New Delhi in India.



M20: Streaming audio from the streets

20.03.2004 16:52

Live streaming audio from the streets:

[Chicago IMC (signed off) | Portland IMC | Washington, DC IMC (signed off) | Enemy Combatant Radio (still broadcasting) (SF-Bay Indymedia)]



Migrant workers in Korea call for international solidarity

19.03.2004 06:28

Korean migrant workers protest 'slave permits' Since November 16 2003 South Korean authorities are hunting 120,000 migrant workers with the aim to deport them. Equality Trade Union Migrants' Branch (ETU-MB) and several other groups decided to resist and occupied on Nov 15 Myeong-dong cathedral compound (Report 15-16 March)in the heart of the South Korean capital Seoul. Seventy migrant workers from Indonesia, Nepal and Bangladesh, are there, daily agitating and protesting against the government's plans. On two occasions legal ETU-MB demonstrations have been viciously attacked by units of immigration officers and riot police, resulting in two migrants being seized and multiple injuries.

On 23 February, 19 migrant workers in Hwaseong detention center began a hunger strike. Migrant workers on hunger strike are presently being forcibly deported. The migrant permit system has been described as a South Korean Slave system providing cheap docile labour to maximise corporate profit. Read a chronology and call for international solidarity at Sydney Indymedia and send a protest via Labourstart.

ZNET: Migrant Workers and the Struggle for Political Space | Equality Trade Union Migrants' Branch | Labour News from Korea



Plan Puebla Panama

18.03.2004 18:52

Tipping a hat to irony, the World Bank recently produced a document entitled Why NAFTA Did Not Reach the South in which it notes,"NAFTA did not reach the south because of obstacles to economic development that afflict the southern states, such as insufficient infrastructure." In its Development Strategy for the Mexican Southern States the World Bank "suggests stimulating economic growth by reducing bottlenecks that impede doing business in the region, such as the lack of market access, the undersized and costly market for financial services, and the plethora of legal conflicts with regard to land tenure."

Preceding his inauguration in 2001, Mexican President, and former Coca Cola executive, Vicente Fox promised to deal with "conflicts with regard to land tenure" by implementing the San Andres Accords on Indigenous Rights and Culture, which would legally recognize and protect communal indigenous land holdings (ejidos). These promises proved empty, however, as virtually simultaneously the first murmurs of Plan Puebla Panama (PPP) issued from the other corner of his mandible, and fox continued his predecessors' policy of war against the indigenous of Mexico.

INDYMEDIA: FTAA IMC | Chiapas CMI




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