International Notes: July 13

International Notes: July 13


Israel: Communists and allies protest demolition of Arab village   

On June 26, the Maki (Communist Party of Israel), Hadash (a coalition of the Maki and other left wing parties), along with peace and human rights groups, organized a demonstration in Tel Aviv to oppose the imminent demolition of the Arab village of Klar Adumim in the occupied West Bank, just East of Jerusalem.  The Israeli government of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu wishes to demolish the village and force its 170 inhabitants to relocate so as to remove Palestinian communities between Jerusalem and the Israeli settler community of Ma’aleh Adumim. This move has already been approved by the Israeli Supreme Court.

The Communists and their allies point out that this is part of a pattern of encroachment of settlements in the West Bank which tend toward sabotaging any possibility of a Palestinian state.

Transnistria:  Communist leader arrested

Police in the Moldavian Transnistrian Republic (a diplomatically unrecognized but de facto independent state on the border between Moldova and Ukraine, with fewer than half a million inhabitants), have arrested a key communist leader.

Oleg Khorzhan is the head of the Pridnestrovie Communist Party, one of two communist parties in Transdistria, and is a member of the tiny country’s parliament, called the “Supreme Soviet”.  According to the Transnistrian communists, Khorzhan has been arrested on trumped up charges of assaulting a police officer, but really is being persecuted for opposing the right-wing policies of Transnistrian President Oleg Krasnoselsky, who is tightly connected to the country’s major big business interests.   The communists are demanding Khorzhan’s release.

Kazakhstan:  Socialists oppose European Union, U.S. penetration

The Socialist Movement of Kazakhstan is fighting against a new set so called ‘market reforms’ being promoted by the government of that Central Asian country.  The new reforms are arising in the context of a bilateral agreement Kazakhstan entered into with the European Union earlier this year.  According to this agreement, Kazakhstan must give preferential treatment to mining companies from European Union countries. Kazakhstan’s government also signed an agreement with the United States in March which gives the U.S. an enhanced right to access to Caspian Sea ports for the purpose of transporting military cargo to Afghanistan.  The Socialist Movement complains that this military use of its territory has been going on for a long time.

The Socialist movement points out that these things will lead to a higher level of imperialist interference in the internal affairs of Kazakhstan and its neighbors, as well as a loss of democracy within the country due to dubious “constitutional reforms” which actually limit the rights of the people.


Colombia:  Communists Call for mass mobilization v. right wing government

The Communist Party of Colombia says that only by organizing in the streets can there be effective opposition to the new right-wing government of Ivan Duque Márquez, elected president on May 27.  Communist Party Central Committee member Alfonso Velásquez points out that Duque’s election has created a difficult situation in Colombia. On the one hand, the Duque election brings into executive power some of the most reactionary and corrupt forces in Colombian society, including people involved in assassinations of grassroots leaders and the drug trade.

On the other hand, however, the progressive “Colombia Humana” (“Humane Colombia”) coalition, whose candidate was Gustavo Petro, got the highest vote for a leftist presidential candidate in recent history.

The Duque victory represents a threat to the Havana peace accords between the Colombian state and the FARC, the former Armed Forces of the Colombian Revolution, which is now a political party.    But the level of “democratic and progressive” parliamentary opposition now includes 33 percent of the Senators, a notable achievement.  Velásquez also notes some disunity within the new government. Mass organization and protest activities are now essential to counteract the right, including on the issue of the peace accords.

Image: Facebook




    Emile Schepers is a veteran civil and immigrant rights activist. Emile Schepers was born in South Africa and has a doctorate in cultural anthropology from Northwestern University. He has worked as a researcher and activist in urban, working-class communities in Chicago since 1966. He is active in the struggle for immigrant rights, in solidarity with the Cuban Revolution and a number of other issues. He now writes from Northern Virginia.


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