Communist World News

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Algerian elections: Workers’ Party loses seats

In Africa on May 11, 2012 at 7:01 pm

ALGIERS, Algeria — The Trotskyist Workers’ Party has not ended among the first three in the legislative elections held on May 10, 2012, according to preliminary reports by Reuters

The ruling National Liberation Front (FLN) is said to have 220 seats in the 462-seat parliament. The National Rally for Democracy of Prime Minister  Ahmed Ouyahia was in second place with 68 seats, and the moderate Islamist Green Algeria alliance was third with 48. It is unclear how many seats the Workers’ Party has gained at this point.

There was widespread apathy amongst the population, with estimates of voter turnout ranging from merely circa 30 to 45 percent. Many presumed electoral fraud, but international monitors have reported a relatively free procedure. “Citizens were, in general, able to truly exercise their right to vote,” said Jose Ignacio Salafranca, head of the EU observer mission. Critics nonetheless argue that the elections are a farce arguing the real power lies with an informal network the Algerian population calls “the power” (le pouvoir).

The National Rally for Democracy and the National Liberation Front are both part of the “presidential alliance”. The Movement of Society for Peace, which is part of the Islamist Green Algeria alliance, is also part of the presidential alliance.

In the previous legislative elections in 2007 the Workers’ Party became the largest opposition party against the “presidential alliance.”

UPDATE:

The Workers’ Party has won 20 seats, in comparison to 26 seats in the previous elections. It is now the fifth largest party. The social-democrats have won 21 seats and are the fourth largest party.

Sources: 1, 2, 3

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Greek communists receive 25,2% of votes

In Europe on May 6, 2012 at 6:51 pm

ATHENS, Greece — The two Greek communist parties, the Marxist-Leninist KKE and the Eurocommunist SYRIZA, have jointly won circa 22-28 percent of the votes according to exit polls. Neo-Nazi party Golden Dawn has won between 6-8 percent of votes.

The Eurocommunist SYRIZA has won between 15 and 18,5 percent of the votes, while the KKE somewhat disappointingly reached almost 7,5 to 10 percent of the votes.

The two ruling parties, who now have two thirds of parliament, have fallen to merely almost 40 percent of the votes jointly. The centre-right New Democracy has won between 17 and 20 percent of the votes (now 33,5 percent). While the now largest social capitalist PASOK has between 14 and 17 percent of the votes (now almost 44 percent).

UPDATE

The four communist parties KKE, ANTARSYA, SYRIZA, ΚΚΕ(μ-λ) jointly received 25,2%. Only the KKE and SYRIZA received enough votes to enter parliament. Other communist parties (such as the Trotskyist EEK, and anti-Russian Maoist conspiracy theorist party OAKKE) received less than 0,1 percent of the votes.

Final results:

New Democracy: 20,4%
SYRIZA: 15,6%
PASOK: 14,2%
Independent Greeks: 10,3%
KKE: 8,3%
Golden Dawn: 6,8%
DIMAR: 5,9%
Ecologists: 2,7%
LAOS: 2,8%
Dimokratiki Simmachia: 2,6%
Creation! Again: 1,9%
Action: 1,5%

The coalition of Trotskyists, Maoists, and Marxist-Leninists, ANTARSYA (Marxist-Leninist party): 1,1%

The Maoist ‘Communist Party of Greece (Marxist–Leninist)’: 0,2%

FC Sankt Pauli does what it was supposed to do, but it was not enough

In Europe on May 6, 2012 at 2:45 pm

HAMBURG, Germany — Left-wing football club Sankt Pauli located in Hamburg failed to reach third place in the second Bundesliga which would have given them the possibility of promotion to the first Bundesliga. Sankt Pauli finished fourth in the second Bundesliga on Sunday.

FC Sankt Pauli, ranked fifth in the 33rd round, needed to win from SC Paderborn 07, ranked fourth, while Fortuna Düsseldorf (ranked third) had to lose to MSV Duisberg. Sankt Pauli won by 5 – 0 from SC Paderborn 07 on Sunday. Goals scored where by Lasse Sobiech (1-0), Max Kruse (2-0), Florian Bruns (3-0), Moritz Volz (4-0), and Deniz Naki (5-0). It turned out this was not enough as Fortuna Düsseldorf played 2-2 against MSV Duisberg.

Both Sankt Pauli and Fortuna Düsseldorf ended the competition with 62 points, but Düsseldorf ended third on the basis of goal scoring ratio of +29 to +25 by Sankt Pauli. Sankt Pauli thus required a win of 10 to 0 in order to end in third place.

Sankt Pauli, the football club known for the radical left supporters base, will be playing in the second Bundesliga next year.

May Day Marches around the world

In Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, North America on May 1, 2012 at 1:11 pm

WORLD — Hundreds of thousands of people around the world march on May Day for better working conditions, pay, or against capitalism.

Thousands of workers protested in the Philippines, Indonesia, Taiwan and other Asian nations, with demands for wage hikes amid soaring oil prices a common theme, Associated Press reports. In Manila, the capital city of the Philippines, nearly ten thousand protesters marched dressed in red toward the presidential palace which was blocked by the police.

In Greece thousands of people marched in the capital city of Athens to protest the austerity measures that have crippled the country. Marches and protests are planned in other European countries as well. In Germany May Day is often preceded by riots in the night before, especially in Berlin and Hamburg. This year left-wing youths merely threw bottles and fireworks at police cars.

In other countries, May Day has been co-opted by the establishment to promote themselves. In Russia around 100,000 people marched including president Medvedev and president-elect Putin in the capital city of Moscow. The May Day march in Moscow targeted opposition groups.

 

 

Colombian soldiers charged with killing of civilians

In Latin America on April 27, 2012 at 2:52 pm

BOGOTA, Colombia — Hundred Colombian soldiers have been charged with the killing of civilians between 2002 and 2008.

In the fight against the Marxist-Leninist FARC, Colombian soldiers are said to have killed circa 50 civilians, including peasants, labour leaders, and workers, and disguised them as guerrilla soldiers in order to boost their success rate.

The Prosecutor General’s office implicated colonels, commanders, deputy commanders and professional soldiers in the scandal. Since the scandal was exposed in 2008, hundreds of members of Colombia’s armed forces have been tried for the crime and incidents continue to be reported.

The killings are alleged to have taken place mostly in the departments of Caldas, Quindio, and Risaralda, in the heart of Colombia’s coffee growing region.

Source: 1

Colombian forces kill three FARC guerrillas

In Latin America on April 24, 2012 at 7:41 pm

BOGOTA, Colombia — The Colombian army is said to have killed three FARC guerrillas in a military operation, in the Nariño Department in southwest Colombia, as well as capturing three other guerrillas.

The Colombian army targeted an alleged FARC base, where they are said to have kill three guerrillas, and captured another three guerrillas, as well as confiscating arms, ammunition, explosives, and a laptop, according to reports.

Colombian troops are said to have found housing for up to 18 guerrillas in eleven cabins at the small encampment.

Source: 1

Sudan and South Sudan Clash Again

In Africa on April 23, 2012 at 6:05 am

Heglig, Sudan —Sudan and newly-independent South Sudan accused each other of launching fresh attacks on their territories on Sunday as neither side showed any sign of bowing to global pressure to return to the negotiating table.

South Sudan said Sudanese troops attacked settlements about 10km (6 miles) on its side of the border and carried out air raids in a range of areas including its oil-producing Unity state.

“We are building up troops because we think that the Sudanese army is also building up,” Mac Paul, deputy director of South Sudan’s military intelligence, told reporters in the southern border town of Bentiu.

Sudan confirmed there had been clashes, which come after 10 days of fighting over the oilfield town of Heglig.

Satellite pictures of the Heglig area released on Sunday suggest key oil installations were badly damaged in the fighting and are no longer operating.

Sudan and South Sudan have accused each other of attacking oil facilities. On Friday South Sudan said it was withdrawing from Heglig, while Sudan said it forced out the South’s troops.

Access to the disputed border region around Heglig is limited, making it difficult to verify what is happening in the area.

The 10-day occupation by the world’s newest nation met widespread criticism, including from United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon, who called it illegal.

Foreign powers have also called for an end to Sudan’s cross-border air raids.

Sudan’s oil minister Ishaq Adam Gamaa said the chance of the sides reaching a settlement soon was now “very remote” and said Khartoum would probably demand compensation for damage to Heglig before returning to talks.

– Viktor

Far-left loses to far-right in French elections

In Europe on April 22, 2012 at 8:48 pm

PARIS, France —Far-left candidate Jean-Luc Melenchon disappointedly ended in fourth place in the French elections on Sunday. Social capitalist Hollande of the Socialist Party won the first round with 28,5 percent of the votes, while conservative and current president Sarkozy received 26 percent of the votes.

Jean-Luc Melenchon

Polls consistently indicated a third place for  Melenchon, the former Trotskyist candidate of the Left Front, who enjoys the support of the French Communist Party. In the elections, far-right candidate Marine Le Pen ended in the third place with nearly 20 percent of the votes, while Melenchon merely received 11 percent of the votes.

Melenchon has urged his supporters to vote for Hollande in order to oust Sarkozy in the second round. If Sarkozy loses, he will be the eleventh eurozone leader to be swept out since the start of the bloc’s debt crisis in late 2009.

Four Guerrillas killed, one captured by Colombian army

In Latin America on April 22, 2012 at 12:19 pm

 TEORAMA , Colombia — The Colombian armed forces are said to have killed four guerrilla combatants of the FARC and capturing one, as well as uncovering a large weapon cache with more than 7,000 rounds of ammunition, explosives, six rifles, and one handgun.

The fighting between the FARC insurgents and the Colombian army are reported to have taken place near or in  Teorama municipality in the Norte de Santander Department near the Venezuelan border.

A 20-year-old female insurgent voluntarily surrendered herself to soldiers, according to reports.

Source: 1

Mixed Support For Argentina to Nationalize Energy Company

In Latin America on April 21, 2012 at 6:50 pm

HAVANA, CUBA — Cuba on Friday expressed support to Argentina for its decision to expropriate a majority share of Spanish-owned oil company Repsol YPF, saying it is lawful.

Argentina has the “right to exercise permanent sovereignty over all its natural resources,” the Cuban Foreign Ministry said in a statement carried by the country’s official daily Granma.

On Monday, Argentine President Cristina Fernandez announced a bill, under whichArgentina would expropriate 51 percent of YPF stakes.

The brief Cuban statement accused Repsol of purchasing its controlling interest in YPF for less than its value.

The Spanish company is a key partner of Cuba’s in its efforts to explore for oil off its northern coast in the Gulf of Mexico.

The company is currently drilling some 18 miles offshore in what has been billed as the start of exploration in a vast area thought to harbor billions of barrels of oil.

Argentina’s decision also won support of Venezuela and Nicaragua, among other LatinAmerican nations.

But it has not only angered Spain but also Mexico, which has shares in Repsol throughits state-owned oil company Pemex.

Mark Toner said the United States was very concerned about Argentina’s bid to seize the company, controlled by Spanish energy group Repsol, and had raised its concerns with the highest levels of the Argentine government.

“Frankly, the more we look at this we view it as a negative development,” Toner told a news briefing.

– Viktor