May 13 2017

MASS STRIKES AND OCCUPATIONS BY UKRAINIAN MINERS

These three articles were first posted on the Ukraine Solidarity Committee website at:-

https://ukrainesolidaritycampaign.org/

1.URGENT APPEAL FOR SOLIDARITY

Miners’ Rally in solidarity with the occupation at Kriyvyi Rih

Ukrainian miners are engaged mass action in the city of Kryvyi Rih with strikes, occupations and a hunger strike of 400 miners underground in the “Yubileynaya” (Jubilee) mine of EVRAZ Sukha Balka JSC in Kryvyi Rih.

The” ArcelorMittal “workers seized the plant, and the” Evraz Sukha Balka “family of miners blocked access roads to the mines. Around the plant “AMKR” a rally was held of 1500 workers. Then they  occupied four floors of management builidng.  The workers are demanding a €1,000 (equivalent) pay rise immediately.  They also demand improvements in health care, no cuts in holidays, and indexation of wages, taking into account inflation in the country.

The Independent Miners Union of Ukraine (NGPU) are calling for urgent international solidarity in their struggle with the oligarchs who own the mining companies.

The oligarchs of the main companies, JSC “KZRK” (owners include by Rinat Akhmetov and Igor Kolomoisky) and JSC “Evraz Sukha Balka” (owners include by Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich), all pay low taxes and hoard money offshore.  The employers are now trying to break the strike by force, blocking supplies of even fresh water to the miners occupying the mine. EVRAZ are refusing to negotiate with the Independent Miners Union (NGPU) and who are demanding an increase in wages.

Send letters of protest and organise demonstrations at EVRAZ:

http://www.evraz.com/about/contacts/

http://corporate.arcelormittal.com/site-services/contact-us

Ukraine Solidarity Campaign appeals to the labour movement to support the miners struggle.

 

 2. MINEWORKERS’ PROTESTS CONTINUE IN KRYVYI RIH

Miners rally outside occupied HQ of mine owners

In Kryvyi Rih miners from the Public joint stock company Kryvyi Rih Irone-Ore Combine (KZRK), PJSC  ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’ and PJSC  ‘ArcelorMittal-Kriviy Rih’ are fighting for raising salaries. Nearly 300 miners of two mines of PJSC ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’ are protesting inside mine. The workers of PJSC  ‘ArcelorMittal-Kriviy Rih’ held a protest today morning.

According to head of the Independent Trade Unions of Ukraine (NPGU) Mykhailo Volynets, a lot of protesters of two mines of ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’ were staying underground more than a day.

‘The miners of mines ‘Juvileyna’ and ‘Frunze’ of PJSC ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’ are protesting underground and demanding raising wage. Yesterday evening the representatives of administration came to miners and propose to raise wages only by 12% from 1st May.  But miners agree only with wage increasing by at least 20% from 1st May and further a gradual increasing of 30% by August.  For now people stay at a depth of 1343 m without food. As I was informed, the administration doesn’t allow the delivery of food them’ – said Mykhailo Volynets.

The Head of the Kryvyi Rih branch organization of the NPGU Yuri Samoilov informed, that today morning peaceful protestі were held for support of the miners JSC ‘KZRK’ and ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’. At the same time the workers of the mine building unit of JSC ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’ showed their solidarity with the miners and blocked access roads to the enterprise.

Workers and trade unions of PJSC ‘ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih’ at 8 am also held a peaceful protest near the enterprise building. It was attended by over a thousand employees. The protesters expressed their demands: to rise wages; to stop the dismissals of employees and transferring employees on an outsourcing; to renew the programs for provision of housing for employees etc. Also they expressed their support for miners JSC ‘KZRK’ and ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’. Then the protesters went to the office of PJSC ‘ArcelorMittal Kryvyi Rih’. Workers demanded meeting with enterprise’s management. If the management refuses to meet with the protesters, some of them are ready to start hunger strike.

As it was informed before, miners from four mines of the KZRK, protested underground and demanded to raise salariesю Today the negotiation between  representatives of workers and the KZRK management continues.

More news on KVPU’s site:

http://kvpu.org.ua/en/news/4/2159-workersprotestscontinueinkryvyirih 

Olesia Briazgunova, Information department  the Confederation of Free Trade Unions of Ukraine (KVPU)

 

3. IN KRIYVYI RIH MINERS FROM DIFFERNT ENTERPRISES FIGHT TO RISING WAGES

Striking miners form Kryvyi Rih

On 4 May in Kryvyi Rih miners from the Kryvyi Rih Iron Ore Combine (KZRK) have started the protest underground. The Head of the Independent trade Union of Miners of Ukraine  (NPGU) Mykhailo Volynets  said that the workers from night shift of mines  “Rodina”, “Guardiiska”, “Ternovskaya” and 10 miners from mine “Oktyabrskaya” didn’t rise to the surface. 

During 5th May the miners from four mines of the Kryvyi Rih IronOre Combine (KZRK), who protested underground, rose to the surface. The initiative group of miners and representatives of Primary trade union organization of the Independent Trade Union of Miners of Ukraine (NPGU) began negotiations with representatives of the administration of the KZRK.

Miners of KZRK require salary increase of at least 50%. The head of the women’s committee of city organization NPGU Elena Maslova said that finally constructive dialogue had begun.

“All suggestions and comments were placed on record. For now the protocol of negotiations included two major issues. Firstly, we made agreement that the administration wouldn’t make pressure on the initiators and participants of the protest. Secondly, we agreed to start the detailed discussions on salary increases as soon as possible’.

On 5th May Primary trade union of NPGU of mine ‘Evraz Sukha Balka’ appealed to the administration of enterprise and demanded  to increase salary to $ 1,000. Today they informed the Head of NPGU Mykhailo Volynets that today afternoon the miners of first shift were going to stay in mine and protest.

“The representatives of enterprise hesitate with constructive measures to raise wages. In the same time they are trying to find activists from Independent Trade Union of Miners of Ukraine, who are guilty of these situation”- said Mykhailo Volynets.

On 6th May 10 miners of a night shift from mine “Artema-1 of enterprise ‘ArcelorMittal-Kriviy Rig’ also refused to rise to the surface. They demanded rising salaries. Miners finished their protest after negotiations with representatives of ‘ArcelorMittal-Kriviy Rig’. Miners were promised that on May 11 the problem of raising wages will be solved. But trade union prepares protest:-

“Requirements of miners of Krivyi Rih are fair. In Ukraine the price of products and utilities has increased. At the same time wages of miners of Krivyi Rih are still low. NPGU support Krivyi Rih miners. Also we appreciate the support of international organizations, which helps miners and trade unionists to fight for decent salaries”, said Mykhailo Volynets.

 

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also see:-

MINERS STAND TOGETHER STATEMENT BY THE NUM

URGENT APPEAL FOR SOLIDARITY FROM THE RAILWAY WORKERS OF UKRAINE

 

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Apr 07 2017

SOME OBSERVATIONS UPON ‘THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND’

Allan Armstrong makes some observations on The Commonwealth of England written by Steve Freeman (see http://republicancommunist.org/blog/2017/04/07/the-commonwealth-of-england/). He examines the likely role that federalism will play in IndyRef2, drawing on the historical precedents for its use in the UK and USSR.

 

SOME OBSERVATIONS UPON THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND

There is a great deal I agree with in Steve’s article. In a later contribution to this discussion I would like to develop Steve’s historic analysis, going back to the days of the Levellers, through the Chartists and on to the Suffragettes. However, in these observations, I will confine myself to the issue of federalism.

The political origins of the idea of British federalism go back to the first attempts to hold together the British Empire in North America, when faced by the challenge of American republicanism. It failed. The challenge of Irish republicanism and the War of Independence from 1919, led to a Westminster Speakers’ Conference. This recommended a federal solution for the UK. It too failed. Although the UK state did instead, after Loyalist pogroms and reactionary unionist Partition, come up with the earliest form of political Devolution in the UK – Stormont. No wonder, it was difficult for others later to win support for devolution in Scotland and Wales, when Stormont formed the precedent!
Continue reading “SOME OBSERVATIONS UPON ‘THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND’”

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Jan 27 2017

FROM RUSSIAN SOCIALISTS TO AMERICAN COMRADES

In the spirit of genuine internationalism Emancipation & Liberation is posting this appeal from Russian socialist to American comrades, first posted at:- http://anticapitalist.ru

 

FROM RUSSIAN SOCIALISTS TO AMERICAN COMMUNISTS

To our Comrades in the United States of America,

As leftists from Russia, we support the struggle of progressive forces against the growing chauvinism and neoliberalism in the Unites States in the face of the Donald Trump administration. Every day, the Russia Media insists that Trump is Russia’s main ally—or, in fact, an ally of Putin’s regime. However, the Putin regime is based on the power of big capital and bureaucracy, and it is in actuality working against its own people. Any
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Nov 20 2016

FROM FARAGE’S BREXIT, TO TRUMP’S “BREXIT PLUS, PLUS, PLUS”, AND ON TO ‘MADAME FREXIT’?


WHAT DOES TRUMP’S VICTORY SIGNIFY?

– ALLAN ARMSTRONG IN CONVERSATION WITH

ALAN BISSETT, BRIAN HIGGINS, PAUL STEWART AND

JOHN TUMMON

(see short biogs at end)

 

 1. ALLAN ARMSTRONG – 9.11.16

“An even greater leap into fantasy land is the belief that Brexit will provide a progressive example to other member states wanting to break away from the EU…. The first and unfortunately well-known non-UK person to celebrate Brexit was none other than the Right populist US Presidential hopeful, Donald Trump. With typical crassness he chose his new golf course at Turnberry in Scotland to declare his solidarity with Brexit… Another presidential hopeful, Marine Le Pen, of the French Far Right National Front, was the first significant European politician to proclaim her solidarity with Brexit.
Continue reading “FROM FARAGE’S BREXIT, TO TRUMP’S “BREXIT PLUS, PLUS, PLUS”, AND ON TO ‘MADAME FREXIT’?”

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Nov 08 2016

URGENT APPEAL FOR SOLIDARITY FROM THE RAILWAY WORKERS OF UKRAINE

 

 

We are posting this appeal from the Ukrainian Solidarity Campaign (https://ukrainesolidaritycampaign.org/2016/11/06/urgent-appeal-for-solidarity-from-rail-workers-union-of-ukraine/).

vpzu-2

 

The Ukraine Solidarity Campaign is calling on our affiliates and the Labour Movement to provide solidarity to the Free Trade Union of Railway Workers of Ukraine (VPZU) who are in struggle at the Kurenivsky trolleybus depot in Kyiv.  The VPZU which is an independent trade union is fighting for basic trade union rights against an anti-union employer.   Please send letters of protest to the Mayor of Kyiv and republish this appeal.

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Apr 07 2016

THE CENTENARY OF THE IRISH REBELLION OF 1916

As part of our celebration the 1916 Easter Rising, we are posting two new articles.  The first is by Allan Armstrong (RCN), and addresses Lenin’s response to in his Irish Rebellion of 1916 (which is also posted). The second comes from the latest issue of Socialist Democracy (Ireland) and looks at the situation in Ireland today, 100 years after the Rising.

 

1. LENIN AND THE IRISH REBELLION OF 1916

The Dublin GPO during the 1916 Rising, painted by Robert Ballagh

 

In the midst of the First World War, following the Dublin 1916 Easter Rising, Lenin returned to the issue of national self-determination. He had already addressed this at the beginning of the year in The Socialist Revolution and the Right of Nations to Self-Determination. Immediately before the Rising, he had also gone on to write The Discussion on Self-Determination Summed Up.
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Mar 28 2016

THE EASTER RISING AND THE SOVIET UNION: AN UNTOLD CHAPTER IN IRELAND’S GREAT REBELLION

This article by Brendan McGeever was first posted on OpenDemocracyUK at:- https://www.opendemocracy.net/uk/brendan-mcgeever/easter-rising-and-soviet-union-untold-chapter-in-ireland-s-great-rebellion#.VvUvpKvURyY.twitter

 

THE EASTER RISING AND THE SOVIET UNION: AN UNTOLD CHAPTER IN IRELAND’S GREAT REBELLION

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In a previously undocumented corner of history, research in old Soviet archives shows the extent of the USSR’s interest in Ireland’s Easter Rising.

It is early July, 1920. Roddy Connolly, teenage participant in the Easter Rising, is travelling without a passport in a cargo boat through the Norwegian fiords. The destination: Soviet Russia. As they edge towards the northern tips of the Kola Peninsula, the boat is blown off course by an incoming storm, pushing them some 250 miles towards the North Pole. After bouts of seasickness, they eventually dock in a besieged Murmansk, where Connolly begins a three-day rail journey across Civil War-torn Russia. Finally, he reaches revolutionary Petrograd, just in time for the opening of the Second World Congress of the Communist International. On arrival he is warmly greeted by Vladimir Lenin, who informs him that not only has he read his father’s book Labour and Irish History, but that he rates him “head and shoulders” above his contemporaries in the European socialist movement (1).
Continue reading “THE EASTER RISING AND THE SOVIET UNION: AN UNTOLD CHAPTER IN IRELAND’S GREAT REBELLION”

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Feb 08 2016

UKRAINE SOLIDARITY CAMPAIGN AND THE BAN ON THE CPU

 

Statement by the Ukraine Solidarity Campaign on the CPU Ban and the Ukrainian Question

 

USC Banner

 

The Ukraine Solidarity Campaign condemns the decision of the District Administrative Court of Kyiv on 16th December 2015: “To suspend the activities of the Communist Party of Ukraine”. This judgement in effect prevents the Communist Party of Ukraine (CPU) from participating in elections and engaging in other activities under its own name. On 25 January 2016 the Supreme Administrative Court of Ukraine upheld the judgement, which is now being challenged at the European Court of Human Rights.
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Nov 28 2015

MINERS STAND TOGETHER STATEMENT BY THE NUM

CONDEMN THE DEFAMATION OF NUM SOLIDARITY WITH UKRAINIAN MINERS

 

The National Union of Mineworkers has issued a strong statement on the Ukrainian question as a rebuttal to a number of smears against their union.   That any section of the labour movement would engage in such smears is further evidence of the shocking depths of retrogression some have descended to recently.  The NUM is the only trade union in the UK that has visited Ukraine repeatedly since the current crisis began, with a fourth delegation having just returned which visited a number of areas and met with a range of trade unionists.  We encourage other sections of the labour movement to republish the NUM statement and learn from their example of true internationalism.

Ukraine Solidarity Campaign, 24.11.15

 

STATEMENT BY THE NATIONAL UNION OF MINEWORKERS

num

The NUM is disturbed by the smears against our union regarding our approach to the conflict in Ukraine.  These smears have been promoted mainly by elements on the outskirts of the Labour Movement, sadly some who should know better have been willing to give air to such defamation.  We at the NUM have long experience of those who would seek to sow divisions and discredit us and we have a proven record of defending ourselves when necessary.

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Sep 21 2015

CENTENARY OF THE ZIMMERWALD MANIFESTO

It is the centenary of the publication of the Zimmerwald Manifesto. This was produced by social democratic delegates from  countries drawn into the imperialist First World War. Chris Ford of the Ukrainian Solidarity Campaign provides an introduction to this important document. He shows the relevance of the Zimmerwald Manifesto to the situation we face today, particularly Ukraine. 

CENTENARY OF THE ZIMMERWALD MANIFESTO

zimmerwald-booklet-2

 

One hundred years ago an International Socialist Conference of those opposed to the First World War gathered in Zimmerwald, near Bern Switzerland from 5 to 8 September 1915. At a time when the international socialist movement had shattered with many supporting the war  the conference at Zimmerwald by those who emained faithfull to the principles of the socialist international offered a beacon of hope in a Europe gripped by war and reaction.  The International socialist conference began a movement around the Manifesto which it produced.
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