Bangladesh: Challenge Before Third Hasina Govt

DESPTE the hartal, blockade and boycott call by the BNP-Jama’at-e-Islami combine and the sporadic violence, the people of Bangladesh cast their vote to elect the tenth parliament on January 5. Before the polling started, armed cadres of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party and Jama’at-e-Islami (JI) burnt down around 350 polling booths including schools, set afire ballot boxes with ballot papers, killed one presiding officer by hurling bombs, and cut the road links to prevent the movement of polling parties and security forces in some places.

Afghanistan: Karzai Talks Tough

THE visit of the Afghan president, Hamid Karzai, to India in the second week of December came at a time when negotiations with the Americans on the future of their forces in his country were poised at a critical stage. Before Karzai landed in Delhi, there were reports that the Obama administration had asked India to intervene on its behalf and persuade President Karzai to put his signature to the Bilateral Security Agreement (BSA) on the presence of US troops in Afghanistan after 2014.

Pro-Liberation Forces on Offensive

A LAST-DITCH attempt by the BNP-Jama’at-e-Islami combine to lay a siege at capital city, Dhaka, on December 29 so as to force the Sheikh Hasina government to quit has fizzled out. A week before the Bangladesh parliamentary election --- that were scheduled to be held on January 5, 2014 --- Mrs Khaleda Zia, chairperson of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP), called upon all the ‘able-bodied’ men to come to Dhaka on the day for what she called ‘March to Democracy.’

Iran Interim Nuclear Deal: Important Breakthrough

THE preliminary nuclear deal which Iran and the P-5+1 (the US, Russia, China, France, UK and Germany) finally signed in the last week of November, has partially lifted the sanctions on Iran for six months. The groundwork for the agreement was laid much before the formal agreement was announced. Secret talks between American and Iranian officials have been ongoing since last year. The contacts were intensified following the election of the new Iranian president, Hassan Rouhani, who had won the elections with a massive majority earlier in the year.

Global Crisis Continues, Resistance Too Grows

NOTWITHSTANDING the fits and bursts of hopes of recovery in 2013, the world capitalist economy continued to falter and stagger, confirming that the global crisis triggered by the financial meltdown of 2008 continues to plague the global economy. Except for socialist China, all the other so-called emerging economies which, like India, might have initially withstood the devastating impact in 2008, have also begun to buckle under this impact.

Bangladesh Set for Polls amidst Turmoil To Avoid Constitutional Crisis

AMIDST continuous violence and refusal of the main opposition party BNP and allies to participate in the poll, Bangladesh is going for election to constitute its 10th parliament on January 5, 2014 next. Ruling Awami League leaders said without the participation of the main opposition party, elections to national parliament is not a happy thing. But there is no other alternative other than going for election as the tenure of the present parliament will end on January 24 next. To avoid a constitutional crisis, elections have to be held before the tenure of the present parliament expires.

Moves Afoot to Disband Pro-Unification Party

ACCORDING to a report issued by the secretariat of the Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of Korea on October 24, 2013, a South Korean conservative group has urged the country’s ministry of justice, often considered to be a pliant body, to form a "team of experts to take measures against political parties and organisations violating (the) constitution," and has staged the farce of making a legal examination to facilitate the disbanding of the Unified Progressive Party.

The Snowden Effect: US Facing International Opprobrium

LATEST revelations emanating from the dossier compiled by the American whistleblower, Edward Snowden, have provided irrefutable proof that the Obama administration has been spying on friends and foes, on its own citizens and foreigners alike. The international community is now fully aware that the American security agencies, if they so wish, can decipher the political and social tendencies of millions of global citizens at a flick of a button.

Rally Concludes Ghadar Party Centenary

ORGANISED in Bradford on November 24, a rally concluded the series of events marking the centenary of the Ghadar Party in Great Britain. (This revolutionary party was formed at San Francisco, USA, in November 1913.) A perfect setting for the concluding tribute to the Ghadar Party martyrs and heroes in this centenary year was provided by an event that was organised in collaboration with the South Asia Peoples Forum, representing the people from Pakistan and India in the Indian subcontinent, and the Indian Workers Association Great Britain (IWA-GB).

IWA-GB Conference Enters New Era

THE Indian Workers’ Association Great Britain (IWA-GB) concluded its national conference at Leicester on November 23. The conference celebrated the 75th anniversary of IWA-GB and marked the launch of a new era in the organisation. One may note that the new central executive committee of the organisation has Joginder Kaur Bains as its national general secretary, the first woman in this position.


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