Saturday 14 June - SOLIDARITY WITH POLITICAL PRISONERS OF IMPERIALISM!- BREAK THE CHAINS! LONDON!

Saturday 14 June - SOLIDARITY WITH POLITICAL PRISONERS OF IMPERIALISM!- BREAK THE CHAINS! LONDON!



On Saturday 14 June supporters of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! (FRFI) hosted a Break the Chains rally event in solidarity with political prisoners of imperialism.

The rally took place on the east pavement of Trafalgar Square, outside the South African embassy, where from 1986 to 1990 City of London Anti-Apartheid Group held a non-stop picket for the freedom of Nelson Mandela and all South African political prisoners and for the liberation of South Africa from the racist barbaric system of apartheid.



Break the chains was supported by individuals and groups, including:
* Kurdish comrades from Halkevi demanding the release of Abdullah Ocalan from his incarceration and freedom for Kurdistan,
* Rock around the Blockade and the Marti-Maceo organisation of Cubans in Britain who are both campaigning for the Cuban 5, held prisoner in the US
* The London Guantanamo Campaign, who spoke about Binyam Mohammed, the last Londoner in Guatanamo
* Crossroads Women’s Centre, who spoke about the case of Pierre Antoine Lovinski, a human rights activist who disappeared in Haiti last year
* Tyneside Community Action for Refugees (TCAR) who reported on the activity in support of asylum seekers in Newcastle, the Pledge of Resistance against dawn raids and the current urgent campaign to free TCAR member Mako Oumakani from Dungavel Detention Centre
* London No Borders, who are campaigning in support of detainees resisting immigration detention
* No More Prisons. who are organising a demonstration outside Styal Prison on 10 August to commemorate the life of campaigner Pauline Campbell



FRFI supporters spoke over the megaphone about
* the Lucasville 5 prisoners on death row in the US
* Mumia Abu Jamal, former Black Panther and revolutionary journalist, framed for a murder 27 years ago, on death row and still fighting back
* Palestinian prisoners and the reality of life in Palestine - particularly in Gaza -  where the whole population has been made prisoners.
* British prisons and the Labour government’s plans to vastly increase the capacity of prisons and detention centres to incarcerate the poor and working class
* the importance of standing in solidarity with the oppressed and imprisoned of the world against the barbarism of capitalism and imperialism and Britain’s ongoing vicious war and occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan
* the racist nature of imperialism in the US where one in nine black men aged 20-34 is behind bars

Towards the end of the rally we received news of an uprising at Campsfield Detention Centre, which we announced on the megaphone. FRFI sends solidarity greetings to the detainees and all those in struggle against detention and imprisonment.



Break the chains!
Solidarity with all political prisoners of imperialism!

 

Saturday 14 July - Lloyds TSB: Hands off Cuba! London!

Saturday 14 July - Lloyds TSB: Hands off Cuba! London!

RATB tells Lloyds TSB: Hands off Cuba!

On Saturday 12 July, members and supporters of Rock around the Blockade (RATB) held a lively demonstration outside the Camden branch of Lloyds TSB bank in north London, protesting at the bank’s recent capitulation to the US blockade of Cuba.

Lloyds TSB has written to its business customers who deal with Cuba telling them they can no longer use their accounts to trade with Cuba. The letter states ‘I must advise you to find alternative ways of making payments to your suppliers with Cuban connections.’

RATB is calling on the public to put pressure on Lloyds TSB until they state in writing that they will not discriminate against British companies who legitimately trade with Cuba. We oppose these bullying tactics against British companies who legitimately trade with Cuba and we stand in solidarity with the Cuban people, against attacks and attempts to isolate them.

About the US blockade For almost 50 years the US has imposed an illegal blockade of Cuba. The Helms Burton Act, 1996, the latest addition to the blockade legislation, makes foreign companies who invest in Cuba liable to prosecution in the US. This followed legislation making it illegal under US law for US-owned subsidiaries in third countries to trade with Cuba. The US blockade of Cuba has been condemned by 16 consecutive votes in the United Nations General Assembly. In 2007, 184 countries (including Britain) voted against the US Blockade of Cuba and only four in favour, however the US overturned this vote with their veto on the Security Council.

Contact RATB more details of these actions and other events: BM RATB, London WC1N 3XX 020 7837 1688 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and visit out website www.ratb.org.uk

Lloyds TSB customers and shareholders should write to:

Phil Markey Relationships Manager, Lloyds Bank, 25 Gresham Street, London, EC2V 7HN



Patricia O'Muerte
 

 

Tuesday 5 August - Asylum is not a crime! London!

Tuesday 5 August - Asylum is not a crime! London!

Close down Communications House



Members and supporters of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! gathered at Communications House, Old Street in London, for the monthly demonstration against the British Labour Government’s racist immigration laws and the ongoing detention and deportation of asylum seekers. Communications House and other Immigration Reporting Centres are places of fear for asylum seekers, they may be detained without warning and sent to a removal centre to await deportation.

Over the megaphone, the message was loud and clear:
Close down Communications House! Asylum is not a crime!

Join us on the first Tuesday of every month in London from 1-2pm outside Communications House, 210 Old Street, London EC1V 9BR. For more details email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone 020 7837 1688
 

 

Sunday 10 August - Prisoners Justice Day! London!

Sunday 10 August - Prisoners Justice Day! London!



Members and supporters of Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!, London Coalition Against Poverty and Women in Prison gathered outside Holloway Prison on Sunday 10 August 2008, Prisoners Justice Day.

This annual event around the world gives solidarity to all those incarcerated in prison and remembers all those who have died at the hands of a brutal negligent inhuman prison system.

The demonstrations for Prisoners Justice Day 2008 at Holloway Prison in London and in Wilmslow, Cheshire at Styal prison were held as a tribute to Pauline Campbell who tragically died in May this year.



Pauline was the mother of Sarah Campbell found dead in Styal Prison in 2003, aged 18 and the youngest of six women who died in Styal that year. Following Sarah’s death Pauline dedicated her life to raising the issues facing women in prison and in particular campaigning against women’s deaths – women murdered at the hands of the prison service. Every time a woman died, Pauline was outside the prison to highlight the tragedy of yet another loss of a young life, of a mother, a sister, a daughter.

There have been forty such deaths of women in the five years since Sarah Campbell died in January 2003. Outside Holloway prison, placards and banners gave the message to passers by on foot, in cars and in buses: No more deaths in custody! No more prisons! People stopped and many vehicles hooted in support, as chants rang out over the megaphone.

The London demonstration remembered in particular the five young women who have died in Holloway Prison in the last four years: Julie Hope and Heather Waite in 2004, Karen Fletcher in 2005, Marie Cox and Jamie Pearce in 2007.

In the words of Pauline Campbell, earlier this year: ‘No civilised society should tolerate prisons that drive their inmates to killing themselves. Likewise, no civilised government should allow this shameful state of affairs to continue.’


 

 

Saturday 1 November - LSE FRFI DAYSCHOOL! London!

Saturday 1 November - LSE FRFI DAYSCHOOL! London!

LSE Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism! student society held a successful dayschool on the subject of 'Che Guevara, Cuba and Socialism in Latin America'. Attendees heard in-depth analyses of the revolutionary processes in Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador.

The speakers were:

  • Dr Helen Yaffe, ( UCL/Rock around the Blockade) - Che Guevara's legacy in Cuba
  • Prof Al Campbell (Utah University, USA) - The challenge of transition in Venezuela
  • Robert Clough (FRFI) - The Battle for Bolivia
  • Fidel Narváez (Movement of Ecuadorians in the UK)- The new constitution in Ecuador



The dayschool took place on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution, and in the context of a revolutionary socialist movement that is gathering pace in Latin America. It was supported by Rock around the Blockade (www.ratb.org.uk) and the Movement of Ecuadorians in the UK (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Dr Helen Yaffe spoke in detail about Che’s work in the Cuban Ministry of Industry during the 1960s. His Budgetary Finance System was an alternative to the system of planning in the Soviet Union, and his conception of socialist transformation influences Cuban society to this day.

Prof Al Campbell spoke about the challenges facing President Hugo Chavez and the socialist movement in Venezuela, as they struggle to overturn capitalism in spite of imperialist aggression and interference from the United States.
Robert Clough described the unique features of the anti-imperialist movement in Bolivia and its development into a powerful force for socialism, defeating violent opposition from the ruling class, again sponsored by imperialism.

Finally Fidel Narváez from the Movement of Ecuadorians in the UK spoke about Ecuador’s new anti-imperialist constitution, which has provided the starting point to free Ecuador from the exploitation of oil multinationals and its crippling overseas debt.
The Bolivarian Alternative for the Americas (ALBA) is forging a united front of radical South American governments which represent the interests of the oppressed. It is a battle with global consequences - directly challenging the regional and global hegemony of US imperialism and its allies – and offering an alternative model for social development in the context of capitalist crisis.

FRFI is proud to stand in support of the anti-imperialist and socialist movements in Latin America, and will continue publicising their achievements.

 

 

Tuesday 4 November - Close down Communications House! London!

Tuesday 4 November - Close down Communications House! London!



On 4 November activists from No Borders, Southall Black Sisters and the Coalition to Stop Deportations to Iraq joined Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!’s monthly demonstration outside Communications House Immigration Reporting Centre in London in protest against immigration Minister Phil Woolas’s new offensive against immigrants and in support of all those faced with detention and deportation.

  • 60 Iraqi Kurds were deported to by charter flight in September and another 50 in October. The government claims that its war against the people of Iraq has rendered the country ‘safe’ for deportees to be forced back to.
  • On 18-19 November the High Court will hear the appeal in the ‘BK’ Country Guidance case about deportations to Democratic Republic of Congo. Meanwhile anyone can see from the news that DRC is not a safe place to be sent to.

Immigration reporting centres are places of fear for asylum seekers, who have to report to them monthly, weekly or even several time s a week. From reporting centres asylum seekers can be detained without warning and sent to removal centres to await deportation. Solidarity outside the centres is always appreciated.

 

 

Sunday 29 December - Victory to the Intifada! London!

Sunday 29 December - Victory to the Intifada! London!

The RCG and supporters from Victory to the Intifada joined up to 1,000 protesters gathered outside the Israeli Embassy in High Street Kensington, London, in a rapidly-mobilised response to the deadly escalation of attacks on Gaza by the Israeli military which have left nearly 300 dead, including children.

Despite early efforts by the police to stop protesters coming through, the demonstration closed most of High Street Kensington. Constant chanting demanded an end to the illegal occupation by Israel, an end to the attacks, freedom for Palestine and victory to the Intifada. At one point the demonstrators organised an impromptu march up the road before returning to the embassy gates.

Shortly after 4pm the police attempted to clear the road, organising a series of violent pushes that were met with resistance and shouts of ‘Shame on you!’ Over the RCG’s ‘open mic’ megaphone, comrades denounced the role of the British Labour government in propping up Zionist state and the British police for defending its racist embassy.

The demonstration was organised by PSC, Palestine Return Centre (PRC), Palestinian Forum of Britain (PFB), British Muslim Initiative (BMI), Stop the War, Friends of al Aqsa, Muslim Association of Britain (MAB), Respect, Islamic Human Rights Commission. As the attacks on Gaza continue – attacks described by Ehud Barak as ‘only the beginning’ – and a land invasion of Gaza is threatened, another protest will be held today, Monday 29 December, at 4pm. Nearest tube High Street Kensington.

Victory to the Intifada will also be holding its regular protest outside Marks and Spencer – British corporate sponsor of Zionism – in Oxford Street on Thursday 1 January at 4pm. Join us to make your condemnation of Israel heard. 

 

Thursday 1 January - Victory to the Intifada! London!

Thursday 1 January - Victory to the Intifada! London!

Over 350 people assembled at the far end of Glasgow's George Square to demonstrate against the ongoing massacre of Palestinians in Gaza.

After 45 minutes of very passionate speeches. The crowd (which was made up of families as well as a lot of children) started to march onto the road and take the protest to the streets.

The Police panicked as there were only half a dozen of them and quickly called in reinforcements and tried to push the demonstrators back to let the traffic through to no avail. The demo moved round George Square cutting off one of the biggest traffic intersections in Glasgow at a time when most of the Square is full of Ice Skaters, Fun fairs and rides and a Music stage.

Militant and lively chanting from the demo throughout calling for Victory to the Intifada and Freedom for Palestine from all in the crowd.

The territory of Gaza is one of the most densely populated on Earth. This type of militant action has not been seen since the start of the latest Iraq war in 2003, when young militant school pupils and young Muslims led demonstrations, blocked roads and led walk outs.

Demo organised by the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Supported by The Scottish Stop the War Coalition, SWP, Glasgow Anarchists, Glasgow Palestine Human Rights Campaign, and members and supporters of the Revolutionary Communist Group / Fight Racism! Fight Imperialism!

Pictures taken with permission from the Glasgow Palestine Human Rights Campaign - http://www.gphrc.org/



 

Saturday 17 January - Celebrate 50 Years of Revolution! London!

Saturday 17 January - Celebrate 50 Years of Revolution! London!



On the 17 January 2009, almost 250 people gathered at Bolivar Hall, the Venezuelan embassy, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution. The meeting, organised by Rock around the Blockade, can only be described as a resounding success.

The panel of speakers was vibrant and the audience more so, both providing discussion points that could have continued for hours. We were honoured to have representatives from the Cuban, Venezuelan and Bolivian embassies. Rafael Sardinas from the Cuban Embassy spoke of the triumph of the revolution and its gains in the face of US terrorism. Williams Suarez from the Venezuelan Embassy and Ruben Vidaurre from the Bolivian Embassy both spoke of developments of Latin America and the inspiration that Cuba provides. It was very significant to be in Bolivar Hall, with Venezuelan and Bolivian comrades, both of whose countries have taken the principled lead and cut all ties with the Zionist State of Israel. In fact, the topic of Palestine was brought up by almost all speakers, Neeva Shanti speaking on behalf of the Revolutionary Communist Group. Diego Almeida, from the Movement of Ecuadorians in the UK, and Jeremy Dear, general secretary of the National Union of Journalists and speaking on behalf of Justice for Colombia. It was clear that many people arrived after having gone to the rally for Palestine in Trafalgar Square that afternoon, and when the floor was opened to the audience for discussion, the brutal, racist, occupation of Palestine was raised with speakers expressing their condemnation of Britain and US’ political and military support of the Israeli State.

Diego Almeida gave a moving and informative history of the Ecuadorian peoples and described the problems they had been having with the corrupt leadership the country had had up until the recent election of Rafael Correa. Jeremy Dear spoke of the serious situation in Colombia, where 1,000s of people are ‘disappeared’, simply for being in trade unions or for taking a stand against the brutality of the government. He talked about the fact that the media is always criticising Cuba with this idea that Cubans have no right or capacity in which to express themselves, but asked us, how many Cubans have been ‘disappeared’ in revolutionary Cuba? The answer is none – compared to 3,000 in Colombia over the last few years, while the media demonises Cuba and holds Colombia up as a beacon of democracy in the region.

Helen Yaffe, author of the soon-to-be released Che Guevara: The Economics of Revolution, gave an energetic speech dispelling many of the myths about Cuba which are regularly propagated by the media and put the recent changes in context of the political and economic situation in Cuba. Hannah Caller spoke about the incredible achievements of Cuba in the field of health and education, and that their quest for universal healthcare includes the internationalist role of Cuban medical teams abroad. Despite the hardship and isolation of the Special Period, not one hospital or school was closed.

One thing was clear to every person by the end of the day, the struggle of the Cuban people is to be celebrated and held up as an aspiration for humanity. Appeals were made throughout the day that it is the responsibility of each and every one of us to become active. The choice for humanity is socialism or barbarism.

The day was rounded off with a beautiful performance by Cuban classical guitarist Ahmed Dickinson.

Viva Cuba socialista!
Long live Palestine!

 

Saturday 14 February - Oxford Street Intifada London

Saturday 14 February - Oxford Street Intifada London



On Saturday 14 February, supporters of the Victory to the Intifada campaign led a vibrant rolling picket of companies that support Israeli apartheid in London's main shopping district.

The Oxford Street Intifada started at Marks and Spencer on Edgware Road and continued to Waitrose, Sainsburys, M&S Oxford St and Lloyds Bank on Oxford Street. The shops were targeted because they sell Israeli products. Lloyds TSB was targeted because of its refusal to allow the transfer of funds to Palestinian charity, Interpal.



A loud rally was held outside each shop. Protestors spoke on the megaphone, explaining the link between the sale of Israeli goods in Britain and the Israeli occupation of Palestine. Thousands of people witnessed the protest, with hundreds stopping to take leaflets and sign a petition in support of a boycott of Israeli goods. The staff at Lloyds TSB were apparently so disturbed by the peaceful rally outside that they shut the branch.

A campaign of the Revolutionary Communist Group, Victory to the Intifada is open to all individuals and groups that support the Palestinian liberation struggle. We actively boycott Israeli goods, organising lively demonstrations to inform the British public and embarrass companies that support Israel. Our weekly picket of the M&S flagship store on Oxford St (Marble Arch end) is now in its eighth year and will continue, every Thursday 6-8pm, until M&S stops selling Israeli products. Please show your solidarity and join us.

 

London branches

North London
020 7837 1688
northlondonfrfi@gmail.com

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