Wednesday, 14 April 2010
Australians to vote on landmark Tamil Referendum
Thousands of Australians will convene on ballot boxes across the country this weekend to express their desire for an independent Tamil homeland.
Human rights advocates and political figures have thrown their support behind the initiative organised by the Tamil Referendum Council of Australia (TRCA) and based on the Vaddukoddai Resolution (VKR), a mandate for independence drafted in Sri Lanka in 1976 by Tamil leaders that was rejected by the Government and led to full scale civil war.
“The Australian government has done nothing to educate the public regarding the repression of the Tamils in Sri Lanka. The VKR referendum can help raise awareness of the situation that the Tamils have faced for decades” said Ian Rintoul, head of the Refugee Action Coalition (RAC).
Over 10,000 voters have registered to vote, with thousands more to enrol in the coming days, according to CPI Strategic spokesperson Stephen Newnhman, a consultancy firm hired by the TRCA to co-ordinate the voting process.
Polling booths will be set up in locations across NSW, Victoria and Queensland on April 17 and 18 with large numbers of voters from other states to submit postal votes.
Pip Hinman, federal election candidate for Grayndler in NSW, described the event as an opportunity to “add to the pressure on the Australian government, which is currently turning a blind eye to the ongoing repression of the Tamil people”.
“Together, we must use these polls to push the Rudd government to break completely from the former Howard government's racist refugee policy in which Tamils (and others) are being denied their basic human rights,” Miss Hinman urged citing the recent political furore surrounding Tamil asylum seekers.
The referendum will be the first of its kind in the Southern-hemisphere, following democratically held referenda across Europe and Canada that have established an overwhelming mandate supporting the formation of a sovereign Tamil homeland in the island of Sri Lanka.
The event takes place almost a year since the Sri Lankan government launched a brutal campaign in the island’s North East, slaughtering up to 40,000 Tamil civilians en-route to a crushing defeat against Tamil Tiger rebels.
Seran Sribalan: 0406 123 503 www.vkr1976.com.au
Tuesday, 13 April 2010
6.30pm Tuesday April 20 (6pm for cheap dinner)
@ the Resistance Centre
23 Abercrombie St
Did you know that 2/3 of Federal education funding goes to educating the 1/3 of students who attend private schools? Today public education is being attacked on a number of fronts from under funding, league tables in high schools, to attacks on staff and student rights at University and TAFE. Come to this Socialist Alliance forum to hear from education activist fighting back for better quality education for all.
John Gauci, Teachers Federation activist
Susan Price, UNSW NTEU Branch President
*Speakers will be appearing in a personal capacity.
Ph 9690 1977 or Paul 0410 629 088 for more information.
Friday, 9 April 2010
An emergency "Unite against racism" rally has been called for 2pm this Sunday, April 11, outside Villawood Detention Centre. The rally has been organized by a coalition of anti-racism groups, in response to the far-right Australian Protectionist Party who are rallying at the same place to attack refugee rights.
"The Protectionist Party are anti-refugee, anti-immigrant and racist," rally organiser Paul Benedek said. "They letterbox leaflets that scapegoat Africans, Muslims and immigrants for crime, unemployment and other social problems. They are big fans of Pauline Hanson and the British National Party, and target 'non-white' immigration, trying to whip up racial hatred."
"Yet the major parties are also to blame. They have given a green light to racism, by also demonizing refugees & using migrants as scapegoats."
"Racism kills. While the APP cowardly taunt refugees who are locked behind razor wire, with tacit support from Liberal and Labor, refugees face deportation to their deaths. Racist attacks on international students and immigrants are increasing."
"This rally will be a peaceful show of support for refugee rights, for equality and justice. We stand with those desperate asylum seekers who have fled war and persecution – not cowardly blaming them for the problems in this country. We will let all racists know their message of hate is not welcome."
Endorsements for the anti-racism rally include: Refugee Action Coalition, Latin American Social Forum, Sudanese Australian Human Rights Association, Social Justice Group, Socialist Alliance, Solidarity, Socialist Alternative, and Resistance.
Full details for the rally are:
"Unite against racism – refugees are welcome, racism is not!"
Rally 2pm, Sunday April 11,
Outside Villawood Detention Centre, 15 Birmingham Ave, Villawood.
More details can be found on facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/event.php?eid=109582062406674
The APP's anti-refugee rally is scheduled for the same place at 3pm. To get a sense of the APP’s racist views, just take a look at their website.
For more information or interviews about the anti-racism rally, contact Paul Benedek 0410 629 088 or James Supple 0438 718 348.
UNITE AGAINST RACISM
Refugees are welcome - racism is not!
The Australian Protectionist Party have called a rally attacking refugee rights for this Sunday, April 11, at 3pm outside Villawood Detention Centre.
The APP are anti-refugee, anti-immigrant & racist. They letterbox leaflets that scapegoat Africans, Muslims & immigrants for crime, unemployment & other social problems. However, the major parties are also to blame - they have given a green light to racism, by also demonising refugees & using migrants as scapegoats.
Racism kills. Refugees are still being deported to their deaths. Attacks on international students and immigrants are increasing.
We need a peaceful show of support for refugee rights, for equality and justice - and to let all racists know that their hatred is not welcome.
Rally Sun April 11, 2pm
At Villawood Detention Centre
15 Birmingham Ave, Villawood (nr Leightonfield Stn)
Please forward this message, organise your friends, bring placards and banners in support of refugees and against racism.
Supported by: Refugee Action Coalition, Latin American Social Forum, Sudanese Human Rights Assoc, Social Justice Group, Socialist Alliance, Solidarity, Socialist Alternative, Resistance.
For information, to add your support, or if you have ideas for the rally, please phone Paul 0410 629 088 or James 0438 718 348 or email paul.benedek2@ gmail.com