Democratic rights

UK government steps up attacks on asylum seekers and refugees

By Julia Callaghan, 21 October 2020

The Conservative government has no intention of upholding the fundamental “right to asylum” section of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted in the aftermath of the Second World War.

Fair Wayne Bryant, jailed for life for stealing hedge clippers, granted parole by Louisiana Pardon Board

By Helen Halyard, 21 October 2020

Imprisoned for life at the notorious Angola State Penitentiary in Louisiana on one count of attempted simple burglary, he was granted parole by a 3-0 vote of the state Parole Board, after being denied parole on three previous occasions.

Nigerian government unleashes massacre against police brutality protesters

By Bill Van Auken, 21 October 2020

Nigeria’s protests against police brutality are also fueled by popular anger over conditions of mass unemployment, endemic poverty and unprecedented social inequality in Africa’s largest country.

UK COVID-19 “alert” system overseen by UK spy chiefs

By Julie Hyland, 20 October 2020

The decision to invest in this secretive body, rather than the National Health Service, is part of the policy of herd immunity, while using the pandemic to restructure economic and social relations and strengthen the state apparatus.

Macron launches anti-Muslim police-state crackdown after terror attack in France

By Will Morrow, 20 October 2020

Macron’s policy is indistinguishable from the fascistic ravings of National Rally leader Marine Le Pen.

Support Socialist Equality Party candidates Joseph Kishore and Norissa Santa Cruz on Colorado ballot

By Socialist Equality Party (US), 20 October 2020

Coloradans have the chance to officially vote for the genuine opposition—SEP candidates Joseph Kishore and Norissa Santa Cruz.

Nigerian anti-police protests continue and garner international support

By Jean Shaoul, 20 October 2020

The dire social conditions are the product of colonial and neocolonial oppression by the imperialist powers on behalf of their banks and corporations, exacerbated by the venal and corrupt rule of the national bourgeoisie.

Macron promotes anti-Muslim “free speech” hypocrisy after terrorist killing

By Will Morrow, 19 October 2020

Less than 48 hours after the murder of a teacher near Paris on Friday, the political establishment launched a campaign for “national unity” behind anti-Muslim laws.

State-orchestrated anti-Semitism witch-hunt extended to UK university campuses

By Thomas Scripps, 16 October 2020

Williamson’s letter is the latest move in a five-year conspiracy of the Conservative government, the Labour Party, and Zionist organisations aimed at criminalising vast swathes of the political left.

North and East of Sri Lanka paralysed by mass anti-government protest

By Subash Somachandran, 15 October 2020

Social opposition is mounting among workers and the poor across Sri Lanka against the Rajapakse government’s continuous attacks on social and democratic rights.

Wisconsin police conduct mass arrest of protesters, journalists after announcement of no charges against killer cop

By Jacob Crosse, 10 October 2020

Relatively small protests in Wauwatosa, a suburb of Milwaukee, have been met with the deployment of the National Guard and overwhelming unconstitutional police violence.

Sri Lankan government presses ahead with plans for a presidential dictatorship

By Saman Gunadasa and K. Ratnayake, 10 October 2020

Facing an economic catastrophe exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, President Rajapakse wants new anti-democratic measures to suppress the eruption of mass social struggles by the working class.

Brazil’s Workers Party promotes military police in mayoral elections

By Miguel Andrade, 10 October 2020

The mayoral elections to be held in Brazil in November and December are laying bare the turn by all factions of the ruling class to the hated Brazilian military.

The Michigan conspiracy, Trump, and the 2020 election

By Eric London, 9 October 2020

Donald Trump is engaged in a plot to deploy fascist militia to overturn the outcome of the election. The working class must demand answers in order to expose and stop the conspiracy.

After the Assange hearing—the fight against imperialism

By Thomas Scripps, 9 October 2020

What took place at London’s Old Bailey was a process of vicious retribution against a journalist who exposed the barbarism of the ruling class before the world.

Macron’s anti-Islamic separatism law: The death throes of French democracy

By Alex Lantier, 8 October 2020

This bill, which would impose control of Islam by the state and mass surveillance of the population, exposes the fascistic and anti-secular policies of the Macron government.

Police shut down protests, fine students at University of Sydney

By Jack Turner, 8 October 2020

On the pretext of enforcing COVID-19 safety measures, the state government has deployed police to conduct anti-democratic operations on a university campus.

Republican operatives indicted in voter suppression scheme in Michigan

By Jacob Crosse, 7 October 2020

Jack Burkman and Jacob Wohl are alleged to have orchestrated a mass robo-call voter suppression campaign that targeted minority voters in Detroit.

Bangladesh’s Awami League government intensifies anti-democratic attacks on its critics

By Wimal Perera, 6 October 2020

Prime Minister Sheik Hasina has responded to the social crisis exacerbated by COVID-19 by suppressing information on the disease and persecuting journalists.

Australian government silent on calls to intervene in defence of Julian Assange

By Oscar Grenfell, 6 October 2020

The silence of the government and Labor has been a green light for the abuses that Assange has been subjected to over the past month, and the entire US-led campaign to destroy him.

UK plans to detain refugees on prison ships

By Robert Stevens, 6 October 2020

Repressive anti-immigration policies, in Britain and Australia alike, have been built up over decades by all political representatives of the ruling class.

Spanish court bars Catalan regional premier from holding public office

By Alejandro López, 5 October 2020

Regardless of who is in power in Madrid, the ruling class exploits the Catalan issue in order to shift politics further to the right and build a police state.

Johnson’s UK government forwards legislation flouting the rule of law

By Robert Stevens, 3 October 2020

Parliament has become an arena for enshrining naked criminality within the highest echelons of the state. And there is no constituency in ruling circles for opposing this.

New York Times echoes Trump’s attacks on “violent anarchists”

By Jacob Crosse, 3 October 2020

Times editorial board member Farah Stockman attacks supposed anarchists from the standpoint of the privileged African American upper middle class.

UK schools told “anti-capitalist” teaching prohibited

By Julie Hyland, 2 October 2020

The guidance builds on the Prevent strategy, first implemented by the Blair Labour government, which targeted Muslims as potential extremists and required schools to report anyone they deemed “vulnerable to radicalisation.”

Assange’s extradition hearing concludes at London’s Old Bailey, with decision due January 4

By Thomas Scripps, 2 October 2020

In a final affront to due process, Judge Vanessa Baraitser refused to admit into evidence a statement by veteran human rights campaigner and Assange’s instructing solicitor Gareth Peirce.

Watch: Stella Moris, partner of Julian Assange, delivers a statement outside the Old Bailey

2 October 2020

“This case is already chilling press freedom. It is a frontal attack on journalism, on the public’s right to know, and our ability to hold governments, both domestic and foreign, to account.”

Detroit City Council defies public opposition and renews facial recognition contract

By Kevin Reed, 1 October 2020

A majority of the council of nine Democrats voted to approve a two-year, $220,000 upgrade and maintenance contract with South Carolina-based DataWorks Plus.

Evidence of war crimes, torture, surveillance and assassination plots: Assange hearing nears final day

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 1 October 2020

The CIA’s surveillance was targeted against Assange’s communication with his legal representatives, considered “priority targets.”

Judge orders release of recordings in Breonna Taylor grand jury proceedings

By Kevin Reed, 30 September 2020

The Kentucky Attorney General's exoneration of the police officers who shot Taylor is being exposed as part of a cover-up that began when she was killed in her apartment on March 13.

Former US prison warden testifies Assange will be treated like a “terrorist”: The “war on terror” comes home

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 30 September 2020

Baird’s testimony made clear that Assange is now the victim of the CIA-backed torture and rendition which he courageously exposed as WikiLeaks publisher and journalist.

Wave of anti-government protests across Egypt

By Jean Shaoul, 29 September 2020

Protests have been small but testify to the social and economic powder keg over which the El-Sisi regime presides.

Assange faces a fate “worse than death” in US prisons, witnesses tell court

By Thomas Scripps, 29 September 2020

No amount of lame denials can hide the fact that if Assange is put in the clutches of these people, he will be disappeared into the darkest corner of the US prison system.

Killing by Colombian military escalates protests against state violence

By Andrea Lobo, 26 September 2020

The wave of unrest is merging with opposition to the devastation caused by the state’s counter-insurrectionary war, which has killed more than 200,000 civilians.

Renewed mass arrests target Kurdish-nationalist HDP in Turkey

By Ulaş Ateşçi, 26 September 2020

There is growing speculation that the Turkish government is preparing a renewed military offensive against US-backed Kurdish-nationalist forces in Syria.

After the exoneration of Breonna Taylor’s killers: The way forward in the fight against police violence

By Niles Niemuth, 26 September 2020

The ubiquity of police violence in the US, with approximately 1,000 people killed every year, is bound up with the extreme growth of social inequality and class tensions.

Decision on Assange’s extradition set for next year

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 26 September 2020

Accepting the defence’s argument that any dramatic change in the facts surrounding the case before November 13 would have to be taken into account, Baraitser asked, “What impact on your case, say you, will the American elections have?”

Australian government seeks to ban phones in immigration detention

By Martin Scott, 25 September 2020

The proposed new laws will allow warrantless searches and the use of sniffer dogs.

Protests erupt over whitewash of police murder of Breonna Taylor in Kentucky

By Niles Niemuth, 24 September 2020

Neither of the two officers who fired the fusillade of 22 bullets that killed 26-year-old Breonna Taylor in her Louisville, Kentucky home were charged by the grand jury convened by state authorities.

Further revelations about sterilizations and medical malpractice at ICE detention facility in Georgia

By Meenakshi Jagadeesan, 24 September 2020

The latest revelations, including the naming of the doctor who performed them, strengthens the account given in a recent whistleblower complaint, while giving lie to the US government’s dismissals.

Medical evidence shows devastating impact of decade-long state vendetta against Assange

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 24 September 2020

What UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Nils Melzer described in May 2019 as the “public mobbing” and “psychological torture” of Assange has had the desired effect.

Assange’s partner Stella Moris calls for Australian government to intervene in his defence

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 September 2020

“This is not something that the Australian government can just hide its head in the sand and say ‘nothing to do with us.’”

Assange faces “very high risk of suicide,” medical expert tells court

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 23 September 2020

Kopelman’s evidence confirms the warnings made since November 2019 by Doctors for Assange that Assange is suffering “psychological torture” and “could die in prison.”

Explosive evidence from Trump insider

Assange dragged from embassy “on the orders of the president”

By Laura Tiernan and Thomas Scripps, 22 September 2020

Cassandra Fairbanks testified that Arthur Schwartz, a wealthy Republican Party donor and key Trump ally, had provided her with evidence of plans by the Trump administration to impose the death penalty.

Thirteen former national presidents demand an end to the British show-trial of Julian Assange

By Oscar Grenfell, 22 September 2020

The statement demonstrates that the attempt to prosecute Assange for exposing war crimes is widely viewed as an act of imperialist banditry that brands Britain and the US as rogue states.

Tens of thousands of Thai protesters call for a new constitution

By Owen Howell, 21 September 2020

An estimated 50,000 people gathered at Bangkok’s Thammasat University on Saturday night, with some protest leaders urging a general strike.

Colorado police conduct militarized arrests of Party for Socialism and Liberation members

By Jacob Crosse, 19 September 2020

The manner of the arrests and the overwhelming charges against the six protesters are a clear act of intimidation against all those determined to put an end to police violence and racism.

Witnesses recall Collateral Murder attack: “Look at those dead bastards,” shooters said

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 19 September 2020

“The publication of that video and those words was the equivalent of the death of George Floyd and his words ‘I can’t breathe’. They had a profound effect on public opinion in the world.”

Democrats engineer removal of Green Party presidential candidates from Pennsylvania ballot

By Kevin Reed, 18 September 2020

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court kicked the Green Party off the November presidential ballot on Thursday on the basis of undemocratic procedural considerations.

Iraq Body Count co-founder: WikiLeaks exposed mass civilian casualties to a global audience

By Thomas Scripps and Laura Tiernan, 18 September 2020

John Sloboda said that the Iraq War Logs had been brought “to the largest global audience of any single release.” There have been no comparable revelations in the last decade.

Former CIA director Leon Panetta: We are prosecuting Assange to intimidate others

By Oscar Grenfell, 18 September 2020

Panetta’s comments confirmed the mafia-character of the US-pursuit of Assange, its politically-motivated nature and flagrant disregard for international laws.

No charges in Missouri police murder of 25-year-old Hannah Fizer

By Jacob Crosse, 17 September 2020

As another killer cop goes free, protesters against the police killing of Ricardo Munoz in Lancaster, Pennsylvania remain in jail, with bail set at $1 million.

Former Der Spiegel journalist exposes US government lies that Assange “failed to redact” and “put lives at risk”

By Laura Tiernan, 17 September 2020

Testimony from John Goetz established that the only “harm to life” came from US war crimes which Assange and WikiLeaks were trying to expose.

Assange exposed “a very serious pattern of actual war crimes,” Daniel Ellsberg tells extradition hearing

By Thomas Scripps, 17 September 2020

Ellsberg said that “with the Manning and Assange papers, I found my name being mentioned all the time as a very good person … to use me as a foil against these new revelations which were supposedly very different from mine.”

Assange would not have fair US trial, witness tells Old Bailey

By Thomas Scripps, 15 September 2020

A damning picture was painted of the degrading treatment which would characterise Assange’s detention in the US and of the impossible restrictions which would be placed on his legal defence.

Trump, Roger Stone call for violence and repression after Election Day

By Patrick Martin, 14 September 2020

The US president and his oldest political crony called for a police-military crackdown to back his continued rule.

Wisconsin Supreme Court blocks mailing out of absentee ballots pending ruling on Green Party ballot access

By Jacob Crosse, 14 September 2020

The Democratic party has led the charge in purging third-party candidates, including the Greens, from the November ballot.

State University of New York scapegoats students for COVID outbreaks, prepares repressive measures

By Alex Findijs, 12 September 2020

Refusing to take any responsibility for this catastrophe, the SUNY system is punishing groups of students for gathering and laying the ground for further police repression on campuses.

UK Tories use Extinction Rebellion protests to argue for savage political repression

By Richard Tyler, 12 September 2020

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has asked officials to take a “fresh look” at the legal status of Extinction Rebellion and see if it can be classified as an “organised crime group.”

Amazon uses former government agents to spy on workers

By Shuvu Batta, 12 September 2020

A number of recent exposures confirm that Amazon has established its own secret internal intelligence agency to spy on its workforce.

Constitutional amendment aims to provide Sri Lankan president with authoritarian powers

By Sanjaya Jayasekera and Deepal Jayasekera, 12 September 2020

Like his political counterparts around the world, Rajapakse’s preparations for dictatorial rule are being made in order to unleash a massive social assault on the working class.

US attempting to block Spanish investigation into CIA spying on Assange

By Oscar Grenfell, 12 September 2020

The US authorities are seeking to prevent judicial confirmation that their pursuit of Assange has included illegal spying, and gross violations of attorney-client privilege.

NYU’s Center for Social Media & Politics: A think tank for a frightened ruling class

By Elliott Murtagh, 12 September 2020

The establishment of the center at NYU, a university with close ties to the state, reflects the ruling class’s increasing concerns over the political effects of social media.

University of Michigan graduate students take a stand for life against profit

By Joseph Kishore—Socialist Equality Party candidate for US president, 12 September 2020

Opposition to the resumption of classes at the University of Michigan is part of a broader struggle of workers against the homicidal policy of the ruling class related to the pandemic.

Colombian security forces massacre 10 youth protesting police murder

By Andrea Lobo, 11 September 2020

The massacre in Bogotá signals the willingness of the Colombian ruling elite to turn to authoritarian rule to crush social opposition in the midst of the uncontrolled pandemic.

Hong Kong police carry out mass arrest of protesters

By Ben McGrath, 11 September 2020

The conditions for the heightened attack on democratic and social rights have been created by the pro-capitalist opposition pan-democrat bloc.

India’s Supreme Court punishes prominent lawyer for criticizing its role in assault on democratic rights

By Kranti Kumara, 11 September 2020

Time and again, India’s Supreme Court has aided and abetted the anti-democratic actions and Hindu communalist provocations of the Modi government.

Assange hearing adjourned as prosecution lawyer is tested for COVID-19

By Thomas Scripps, 11 September 2020

Dr Stephen Frost, founder of Doctors for Assange, told the WSWS, “While the Court today adjourned due to the risk of infection from COVID-19, Julian Assange has been sent back to Belmarsh maximum security prison where the threat of infection from COVID-19 is extremely high—and he is severely immunocompromised.”

Democrats and media silent on execution of Michael Reinoehl by US Marshals

By Kevin Reed, 10 September 2020

New details on the September 3 killing of Michael Reinoehl by a task force led by federal Marshals confirm that the Portland protester was executed in a hail of police bullets.

Scottish Crown Office blocks release of documents vital for Craig Murray’s defence

By Steve James, 10 September 2020

The Scottish Crown Office and government are stonewalling all efforts to secure documentation requested by journalist Craig Murray who is facing contempt of court charges.

Assange targeted for political views in “terrifying threat to First Amendment,” expert witnesses tell hearing

By Laura Tiernan and Thomas Scripps, 10 September 2020

WikiLeaks’ exposure of civilian casualties in Iraq and Afghanistan had played “possibly the most important role” in catalysing public opposition to both wars.

Assange extradition hearing: WikiLeaks exposed US drone killings, torture and rendition, says Guantanamo Bay lawyer

By Laura Tiernan and Thomas Scripps, 9 September 2020

Clive Stafford Smith likened US torture tactics to those of the Spanish Inquisition.

Florida sheriff’s department creates intelligence-led police program to monitor and harass residents

By Alex Johnson, 8 September 2020

A Tampa Bay Times investigative report released last week exposed a Pasco County policing and intelligence-gathering program in Florida which carried out mass monitoring, targeted intimidation and harassment tactics against hundreds of resident families.

The working class must demand an end to the show trial of Julian Assange

By Thomas Scripps, 8 September 2020

Assange’s kangaroo court extradition hearing has seen the UK, which boasts of being one of the world’s oldest democracies, sink to the level of a tinpot dictatorship.

As British show-trial resumes: The working class must defend Julian Assange!

By Oscar Grenfell, 7 September 2020

The persecution of Assange is an attempt to intimidate mass opposition to imperialist war, social inequality and a turn to authoritarianism, amid a breakdown of global capitalism and an eruption of the class struggle.

Washington DC’s mayor and Trump trade authoritarian demands in crackdown on peaceful protesters

By Ray Coleman and Nick Barrickman, 5 September 2020

The office of Washington, DC’s Democratic mayor has been upbraided by the federal prosecutor’s office for trying to “skirt constitutional protections and due process.”

NSA surveillance program exposed by Edward Snowden ruled illegal by US Ninth Circuit

By Kevin Reed, 5 September 2020

The US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the bulk phone record collection program of the NSA—exposed by former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden in 2013—violated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act.

Australian government launches anti-China inquiry in universities

By Mike Head, 3 September 2020

McCarthyite-style parliamentary hearings will be held into “foreign interference in the university sector.”

Oppose NUJ censorship of journalist Craig Murray!

By Laura Tiernan, 3 September 2020

The National Union of Journalist’s actions are an attack on press freedom and the public’s right to access information independently of the state-controlled and corporate media outlets.

Mass protests in Belarus continue as conflict between Russia and NATO intensifies

By Clara Weiss, 1 September 2020

The Kremlin has responded to the growing intervention by the imperialist powers in Belarus by stepping up its support for the Lukashenko regime.

Hong Kong authorities arrest opposition legislators in further crackdown

By Ben McGrath, 1 September 2020

Behind the string of detentions, the real fear motivating the authorities is a united movement of the entire Chinese working class.

Human rights lawsuits used by Chilean “left” to mask preparations for authoritarian rule

By Mauricio Saavedra, 1 September 2020

Amid a growing threat of police-state dictatorship, it once again falls on the Chilean parliamentary “left” and its satellite organisations to conceal the class nature of the capitalist state.

New Jersey teen billed $2,500 for organizing a protest

By Shuvu Batta and Daniel de Vries, 1 September 2020

Emily Gil, a recent high school graduate, was charged $2,500 for “police overtime” after she organized a protest in the town of Englewood Cliffs calling for affordable housing and an end to police brutality.

SEP submits emergency application to the US Supreme Court in Michigan ballot access case

By Kevin Reed, 1 September 2020

The SEP 2020 presidential campaign has appealed to Justice Sonia Sotomayor, the Supreme Court associate justice responsible for the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, in a final effort to overturn the unconstitutional Michigan ballot access laws.

Greek government continues evictions of over 11,000 asylum seekers

By John Vassilopoulos, 31 August 2020

The ND government's actions are particularly brutal amid a resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic, with hundreds of new infections being announced each day.

EU refuses to accept hundreds of refugees rescued in the Mediterranean

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 31 August 2020

More than 400 refugees are waiting in the central Mediterranean Sea off Sicily to be assigned to a safe haven.

Social crisis, class struggle and the 2020 election

By Andre Damon, 29 August 2020

The 2020 election is taking place against the backdrop of the greatest social, economic and political crisis in the modern history of the United States.

Reddit moderators censor WSWS article on Trump’s speech at Republican convention

By Kevin Reed, 29 August 2020

After the article appeared on the front page of Reddit with over 9,000 upvotes, moderators removed it on the grounds that the WSWS is an “unacceptable source.”

The Kill Chain: A new era of world war

By Shuvu Batta, 29 August 2020

The Kill Chain exposes US imperialism’s advanced war preparations against China, with Silicon Valley playing a critical role.

Julian Assange receives first visitors in six months: “He is in a lot of pain”

By Oscar Grenfell, 28 August 2020

The visit has underscored the brutal conditions in which Assange is imprisoned and has sparked renewed fears that his health is continuing to deteriorate.

Rattled by crisis, US-aligned Polish government steps up intervention in Belarus

By Clara Weiss, 27 August 2020

Warsaw is attempting to bolster the EU-backed opposition in Belarus, as the Belarusian president turns to the Kremlin in response to the strikes and mass protests against his government.

British government to use treason laws targeting Russia and China to suppress domestic dissent

By Simon Whelan, 27 August 2020

Under the changes being considered, merely voicing opinions and facts associated with the hindrance of British interests abroad—however the government defines this—will make citizens and groups open to accusations of treason.

Tamil National Alliance in deep crisis after Sri Lankan election collapse

By Subash Somachandran, 27 August 2020

The electoral collapse of the TNA is the product of the political bankruptcy, demonstrated over decades, of the Tamil bourgeois-nationalist perspective.

Free Julian Assange! Defend Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Australia), 27 August 2020

The SEP’s recent National Congress committed to “intensifying the fight for the unconditional freedom of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange” and the defence of all persecuted journalists and whistleblowers.

Thai protest movement spreads across country’s northeast

By Owen Howell, 25 August 2020

Despite last week’s arrests of prominent student leaders, the protests are growing unabated around the country in the lead-up to a major rally planned in September.

Lukashenko threatens military crackdown in Belarus as US initiates discussions with opposition leader

By Clara Weiss, 25 August 2020

The German financial newspaper Handelsblatt noted yesterday that the strike movement has brought the Belarusian economy to the brink of collapse.

Fund appeal for Assange’s legal defence wins significant public support

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 August 2020

The response underscores the international support for Assange among workers and young people which finds no expression in the official political parties or the corporate press.

Online panel examines what would happen if Assange is extradited to the US

By Kevin Reed, 24 August 2020

The expert panelists made clear that Assange would be held in the most draconian conditions, treated as a terrorist and denied due process.

Facebook censors anti-fascist and anarchist groups, falsely linking them with extreme-right violence

By Kevin Reed, 22 August 2020

Facebook has adopted positions put forward by the Trump administration and US Justice Department targeting left-wing opposition in the latest expansion of its political censorship regime.

US Attorney General Barr boasts of nearly 1,500 arrests through Operation Legend

By Jacob Crosse, 21 August 2020

The operation has been used as a screen to further integrate local police departments with federal agencies, while funneling millions of dollars and deploying over 1,000 federal agents into US cities.