CPN-Maoist building base for protests
KATHMANDU, MAR 09 – The CPN-Maoist has begun a nationwide campaign to train its cadres on a fresh protest against the Constituent Assembly. The party leadership is currently holding district-level meetings and restructuring its organisation to strengthen local committees across the country. The campaign follows the decisions of the party’s central committee and other subsequent meetings that stressed a need for stronger structure at the lower level.
The party believes that its plans to foil the November 19 CA election failed due to its ‘weak organisation’ at the lower level. CPN-Maoist top leaders including Chairman Mohan Baidya, Vice-chairman CP Gajurel, General Secretary Ram Bahadur Thapa and Secretaries Dev Gurung and Netra Bikram Chand have been visiting districts to train cadres in the recent weeks. Baidya and Chand are currently in the western region to orient cadres in districts and restructure committees. Addressing an inaugural session of the Rupandehi district committee meeting on Friday, Baidya slammed PM Sushil Koirala for giving controversial remarks on Tanakpur. He said his party will collaborate with other parties to struggle for “national integrity and sovereignty”.
CPN-Maoist leaders said they will kick-start protests across the country as soon as the constitution writing process begins. The party demands that the government and major parties hold an all-party round-table for drafting a new constitution. Members of the CPN-Maoist-led 33-party alliance said they are preparing for a stern protest as the major parties “are reluctant to incorporate us in the CA ”. The parties say they are ready to participate in constitution-writing if they are given proper space. “The government must seek an alternative to the CA for us to participate in statue writing. If that happens, we are eager to engage with them,” said Mani Thapa of CPN-Revolutionary.
Iraqi women protest against proposed Islamic law in Iraq
(Reuters) – About two dozen Iraqi women demonstrated on Saturday in Baghdad against a draft law approved by the Iraqi cabinet that would permit the marriage of nine-year-old girls and automatically give child custody to fathers. The group’s protest was on International Women’s Day and a week after the cabinet voted for the legislation, based on Shi’ite Islamic jurisprudence, allowing clergy to preside over marriages, divorces and inheritances. The draft now goes to parliament.
3 Mohawk protesters could be charged after Ontario rail blockade
Police have taken four people into custody after Mohawk protesters calling for an inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women occupied CN Rail tracks east of Belleville, Ont. Provincial police say demonstrators moved onto the tracks Saturday at about 10:15 a.m. ET in Napanee, leading to CN issuing a stop order for all trains.
PKK sympathizers clash with police in southeastern Turkey
A group of sympathizers of the terrorist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) clashed with police on Saturday night in the Silopi district of the southeastern Turkish province of Şırnak. The group first blocked the İpek Yolu Highway connecting Silopi to Habur, building barricades out of stones and barrels and conducting identity checks. When police attempted to disperse the crowd and re-open the road to traffic, the protesters proceeded to İstiklal Avenue and continued their demonstration there. The protest turned violent after demonstrators hurled rocks and Molotov cocktails at the riot police and police vehicles.
RMG workers clash with cops in Mirpur
Around 20 persons, including five policemen, were injured, five vehicles vandalised and traffic movement halted for nearly three hours in the capital’s Mirpur-12 yesterday during a clash between police and garment workers demanding due salaries. As news spread, authorities of several garment factories in the area suspended production for the day to avert possible violence. Police charged baton and lobbed teargas canisters to disperse the agitators who retaliated with brickbats during the clash that erupted around 11:30am, creating panic among the locals.
Witnesses said the workers had blocked the road before Softex Cotton Private Limited till around 12:00 noon. Workers said they found a notice hanging on the closed factory gate on Friday morning reading “the factory will remain closed as the seven-storey building has been identified as a risky one by engineers”. When they contacted the factory owners and demanded their due salaries and other compensations, they were not given any certain date, claimed the workers.
“Instead, they beat four of us and confined them inside the factory from afternoon till night on Friday,” said a worker, wishing anonymity. Later, Pallabi police rescued them, the worker added. Another worker, Aminul Islam, said he has been working at the factory for 14 years and that it owed him over Tk 1 lakh. “I will not leave the place without taking the money,” he said during the demonstrations.