Orissa, India: Brutal Police Attack on Anti-POSCO Protestors, Leaving 100 Injured

27 May, 2010

A fact finding team traveled to Jagatsinghpur district of Orissa to look into the human rights violations in the wake of May 15 police attack on the activists of POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti (PPSS) and villagers affected by the proposed POSCO project. The team headed by retired judge of the Bombay High Court Justice H Suresh comprised veteran social activist Chitranjan Singh, Professor Kalpana Kannabiran, veteran public health doctor Dr. Punyabrata Gun, senior journalist Bolan Gangopadhyay and human rights activist and journalist Harsh Dobhal.

Upon its arrival on 24th morning, the team held detailed discussions with representatives of political parties, leaders of people’s movements, journalists, academics and other concerned citizens at Bhubaneshwar. On 25th the team traveled to Balituth, proposed POSCO site of Dhinkia, Gobindapur, Patana and other villages and interacted with the local residents and victims of May 15 police firing in an attempt to get first hand information. Following are the prima facie observations by the fact finding team and a detailed report would be compiled and published soon: Continue reading

Maoists Destroy Road Construction Vehicles in Chhattisgarh

Sify News

A Maoist group targeted a road construction project near Barabsapur village in Chhattisgarh’s Kanker District late on Tuesday evening. Several trucks and earthmoving machinery were set on fire.

According to eyewitnesses, over six Maoists attacked the site and torched the vehicles while another 150 stood in the distance on the hilly tracts of Barabsapur. “We were loading our trucks. They came up got the truck down, emptied the truck and set it in fire. There were nearly six Maoists and others were standing down. There were nearly 150 Maoists standing below and they had weapons with them,” said Sonher Thakur, a driver.

Barabsapur is over 45 kilometres away from Kanker. Continue reading

Israel’s Ethnic Cleansing of Palestinian Bedouins

Bedouin family in Negev region of southern Israel/Palestine.

Ethnic Cleansing Inside The Green Line

By Nora Barrows-Friedman & Rawia Abu Rabia

26 May, 2010,  The Electronic Intifada

Al-Masadiya, al-Garin, Khirbat al-Watan, Bir al-Hamam, Khashem Zana, Sawin, al-Shahabi, Wadi al-Naam and al-Mashash are all Palestinian Bedouin villages facing destruction by bulldozers and cement mixers as Israel’s transportation ministry plans to lengthen its Trans-Israel Highway southward into the Naqab (Negev) desert. This means that more than 3,000 Palestinian Bedouins could be displaced if an injunction filed by Israeli civil rights nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) doesn’t succeed in the high court.

Spokespeople for Bimkom (Planners for Planning Rights), the Association for Civil Rights in Israel and the Regional Council for Unrecognized Villages in the Negev, some of the groups filing the injunction, say that the Israeli government approved the highway construction without consideration for indigenous populations in the Naqab.

The Israeli daily Haaretz reports that the highway extension is part of the Israeli government’s plan for “development” of the Naqab, which also includes the construction of a massive Israeli military training facility at the Southern end. Continue reading

Nepal parliament deal ends political impasse

BBC NewsFriday, 28 May 2010


Maoists demanded prime minister resign

Nepal’s MPs have agreed to extend its parliament by up to a year, as reports suggest the prime minister agreed to resign to allow the deal to go through.

Maoist opponents had demanded Madhav Kumar Nepal’s resignation as part of the deal to avert political crisis.

The parliament, elected in 2008, had been due to expire on Friday.

However, the extension was agreed at the 11th hour by the Maoists and the ruling Communist Party of Nepal and Nepali Congress parties.

Dinanath Sharma, a spokesman for the Maoist party – the largest in parliament – was reported as saying agreement had been reached to form a new national consensus government.

The parliament, or Constituent Assembly, which was elected after a decade of civil war, faced a Friday deadline to write a new constitution to replace the interim version.

However, there had been disagreement over the details of the new constitution, which would pave the way for fresh polls. The parliament’s extension allows time for more negotiations. Continue reading

AFRICOM: The ICC’s New Sheriff in Africa? But the real agenda is…


[The modern semi-colonial project in Africa continues without a break.  Having thwarted genuine independent self-sufficiency in Africa at every turn, the old and new imperial powers spin their justifications for dominance in barely concealed racist and condescending terms—“defense of international norms”, “humanitarianism”, “pursuit of justice.”   This article from Pambazuka details how these pretexts are utilized by the USA’sAFRICOM.-ed]

Africa: Africom and the ICC – Enforcing International Justice in Continent?

Samar Al-Bulushi and Adam Branch

27 May 2010

Nearly eight years since its establishment in July 2002, and with its first major review conference just around the corner, the International Criminal Court (ICC) faces a number of challenges.


The fact that it has prosecuted only Africans has provoked charges of neocolonialism and racism; its decision to indict certain actors and not others has triggered suspicion of the court’s susceptibility to power politics; and its interventions into ongoing armed conflicts have elicited accusations that the ICC is pursuing its own brand of justice at the cost of enflaming war and disregarding the interests of victims.[1] Each of these concerns is likely to provoke heated discussions at the review conference in Kampala next week.

But there is another aspect of the court’s role in Africa that will require scrutiny going forward: enforcement. Lacking its own enforcement mechanism, the court relies upon cooperating states to execute its arrest warrants. The ICC has found, however, that many states, even if willing to cooperate, often lack the capacity to execute warrants, especially in cases of ongoing conflict or when suspects can cross international borders. Moreover, the African Union (AU) has rejected the ICC’s arrest warrant for its most high-profile target, Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, and ICC supporters worry that the AU will continue to challenge the court’s authority, especially when the court targets African leaders. The court today thus faces an enforcement crisis: out of 13 arrest warrants issued, only four suspects are in custody. Apparently, having concluded that African states are either unwilling or unable to act quickly or forcefully enough to apprehend suspects, the court has begun to seek support from the one country that has shown itself willing and able to wield military force across the globe: the United States. Continue reading

4 Responses to Maoist Attack on Bus in Dantewada, India

Kishenji, a leader of the CPI (Maoist) in West Bengal, qtd by Press Trust of India, The Hindu, 19 May 2010

On the Dantewada killings he [Kishenji] said “We are very sorry for death of the innocent people, but we request people not to travel with the police in the same vehicle.  Our fight is not with the people, but with the government”.

Arundhati RoyOutlook, 19 May 2010

Media reports say that the Maoists have deliberately targeted and killed civilians in Dantewara.  If this is true, it is absolutely inexcusable and cannot be justified on any count.  However, sections of the mainstream media have often been biased and incorrect in their reportage.  Some accounts suggest that apart from SPOs [Special Police Officers] and police, the other passengers in the bus were mainly those who had applied to be recruited as SPOs.

We will have to wait for more information.  If there were indeed civilians in the bus, it is irresponsible of the government to expose them to harm in a war zone by allowing police and SPOs (carriers of the mantle of all the crimes of Salwa Judum) to use public transport.  Also, for a sense of perspective, let’s not forget that right at this moment, in Kalinganagar and Jagatsingpur in Orissa, hundreds of police are firing on unarmed people protesting the corporate takeover of their land. Continue reading