Britain

UK Labour Party’s civil war blows up in aftermath of European election debacle

By Robert Stevens, 1 June 2019

In the absence of any genuine attempt to overcome the divisions sown in the working class by the 2016 referendum, the European elections became a de facto plebiscite on Brexit.

United Nations Special Rapporteur: Julian Assange is being tortured

By Oscar Grenfell, 1 June 2019

Yesterday’s statement by Nils Melzer, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture, stands as an indictment of all those who have persecuted Assange and sought to poison public opinion against him.

On the spot report: Protest outside Westminster Magistrates Court demands freedom for gravely ill Julian Assange

By our reporters, 31 May 2019

Around 100 people demonstrated outside Westminster Magistrates Court Thursday morning to oppose US extradition proceedings targeting WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Amid grave concerns for his health, Assange transferred to Belmarsh Prison medical wing

By Oscar Grenfell, 30 May 2019

The WSWS demands Assange’s immediate release from the maximum security prison and his transfer to a hospital with the best medical care available and with doctors of his choice.

Julian Assange and the degraded spectacle of Britain’s Guardian

By Robert Stevens, 30 May 2019

Under conditions in which the WikiLeaks journalist is facing life in prison or worse, the Guardian cannot bring itself to defend him.

Letter to Guardian demands retraction of false claim that Julian Assange faces “rape charge”

By Chris Marsden, 30 May 2019

The following is a letter to Britain’s Guardian from Socialist Equality Party (UK) National Secretary Chris Marsden demanding the newspaper correct and apologise for lies they published in an editorial on Julian Assange.

The European elections and the resurgence of the class struggle

By Alex Lantier, 30 May 2019

The EU elections revealed the deep discrediting of the political establishment and its imperviousness to growing demands from the working class for political change.

Despite Assange’s ill health, Swedish court rejects delay to hearing

By Oscar Grenfell, 29 May 2019

The ruling is the latest example of the international legal vendetta being perpetrated against the WikiLeaks founder.

Police intimidation and violence used against UK fracking protestors

By Dennis Moore, 29 May 2019

A police monitoring report highlights how large numbers of officers have been using aggressive and confrontational tactics, most notably in Lancashire and North Yorkshire.

UK ambulance staff quitting in record numbers

By Ben Trent, 29 May 2019

The departure of ambulance staff is part of a wave of medical professionals abandoning the National Health Service.

European election debacle for Conservatives and Labour

By Robert Stevens, 28 May 2019

The ruling Conservatives have suffered their worst ever election result, while Labour suffered a debacle almost as bad.

Ruling conservatives, social democrats collapse in EU elections

By Alex Lantier, 27 May 2019

In Germany, France, Britain and other countries across Europe, these parties that once formed a duopoly dominating the parliament failed to win 50 percent of the vote combined.

UK workers, youth and students demand the freedom of Assange and Manning

“It’s a political imprisonment and completely unjust, so please support, donate and spread the message”

By our reporters, 27 May 2019

SEP campaigners in UK cities won a strong response to the call for the freedom of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and whistle-blower Chelsea Manning.

UK Prime Minister May to quit as Conservative leader June 7

By Chris Marsden, 25 May 2019

May came to lead the country in 2016 as a hated figure and leaves it as a despised political failure.

UK climate change protests: Students speak out against treatment of Assange and Manning

By our reporters, 25 May 2019

Thousands of schoolchildren and students demonstrated around the UK Friday to protest government inaction on climate change.

Grenfell fire inquiry delayed for another six months

By Alice Summers, 25 May 2019

The criticisms of survivors and the bereaved point to the growing recognition of the inquiry’s fraudulent nature and disillusionment with the entire process.

An appeal to young people

Defend the right to tell the truth! Defend Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning!

the International Youth and Students for Social Equality, 24 May 2019

The following statement is being distributed today at climate change protests across the UK.

“Identity politics has created a prison of the mind…while Julian rots in one which is far more real”

Oxford University student calls for defence of Julian Assange

24 May 2019

The following letter was received from a student at Oxford University who attended the May 12 public meeting in London convened by the SEP, in defence of jailed WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning.

999 Brexit/Government crisis

24 May 2019

British Steel collapse threatens 25,000 jobs

By Robert Stevens, 23 May 2019

British Steel’s insolvency threatens to be a virtual coup de grâce against a once powerful section of the working class that has been repeatedly betrayed by the trade unions.

Amnesty International declares Julian Assange “not a prisoner of conscience”

By Laura Tiernan, 23 May 2019

According to Amnesty International, neither Assange nor whistleblower Chelsea Manning are “prisoners of conscience” and their defence is not being actively pursued by the human rights charity.

The rise of the Brexit Party and how to fight it

By Chris Marsden, 23 May 2019

Nigel Farage is intent on portraying the European elections, which will see a massive abstention, as a plebiscite on Brexit and a weapon against any move towards a second referendum.

Collapse of British Steel threatens 25,000 jobs

By Robert Stevens, 22 May 2019

The trade unions and Labour Party have responded to the threat to jobs at British Steel with a predictable outburst of nationalist demagogy.

On the spot report: Ecuador’s government colludes with Washington to seize Julian Assange’s possessions

By Robert Stevens and Chris Marsden, 21 May 2019

Supporters of Assange began gathering by 8 a.m. yesterday outside the embassy to witness and denounce the search and seizure.

Former Ecuadorian consul Fidel Narváez denounces search and confiscation of Assange’s possessions

By our reporter, 21 May 2019

The WSWS spoke to Fidel Narváez, former consul at the Ecuadorian embassy, who was among protesters opposing plans for the police to search and confiscate the possessions of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Speech by Ulrich Rippert to London meeting

“Defending Julian Assange requires the mobilisation of the working class in a struggle against capitalism”

20 May 2019

We are publishing the speech of Ulrich Rippert, chairman of the Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei (Socialist Equality Party) in Germany, at the May 12 public meeting in London in defence of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning.

SEP campaign teams in UK win support for Assange and Manning

By our reporters, 20 May 2019

The campaigns followed last week’s public meeting in London that resolved to redouble efforts to secure Assange and Manning’s freedom.

Conservative Party implodes over Brexit crisis as May agrees to stand down next month

By Robert Stevens, 18 May 2019

A field of up to 20 Tory MPs are expected to stand to replace May as party leader and prime minister, an expression of the fracturing of the oldest political party of the British ruling elite.

George Galloway tried to become Brexit Party candidate—and failed

By Robert Stevens, 17 May 2019

Galloway’s failed attempt to represent Nigel Farage’s party is indicative of how an entire layer of ex-Stalinists and the pseudo-left have become part of a new right.

Speech by Oscar Grenfell

Millions in Australia “view Assange as a hero who is being attacked for revealing the truth.”

By Oscar Grenfell, 17 May 2019

We are publishing here the speech of Oscar Grenfell, a leading member of the Socialist Equality Party (Australia) and national convenor of the International Youth and Students for Social Equality, at the May 12 meeting in London in defence of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning.

Clara Campos of the Julian Assange Defence Committee:

“We must act now in mobilising to free him. He is one of us.”

By Clara Campos, 17 May 2019

We are publishing here the remarks of Clara Campos, a representative of the Julian Assange Defence Committee, who spoke at the May 12 meeting in London in defense of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning.

Audience members at London meeting discuss way forward in fight for Assange and Manning’s freedom

By Laura Tiernan, 16 May 2019

Last Sunday’s public meeting in London convened by the Socialist Equality Party to defend jailed WikiLeaks publisher and journalist Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning provoked a wide-ranging discussion.

UK Tory government maintains benefit sanctions as misery and deaths continue

By Paul Bond, 15 May 2019

There are almost daily reports of the savage human toll of the austerity agenda imposed by successive Labour and Conservative governments in the UK.

“The IYSSE will redouble its efforts to build a mass movement of young people in Assange’s defence”

By Alice Summers, 15 May 2019

We are publishing the speech of the IYSSE representative at the May 12 meeting in London in defence of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning.

“He’s not just a journalist, he’s one of the most significant journalists of all time”

Attendees at London meeting to free Assange and Manning speak out

By our reporters, 15 May 2019

Audience members at last Sunday’s meeting in London in defence of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning spoke to reporters from the World Socialist Web Site .

“The Socialist Equality Party views the defence of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning as the spearhead of an emerging global struggle against imperialism.”

By Chris Marsden, 14 May 2019

We are publishing here the speech of Socialist Equality Party (UK) National Secretary Chris Marsden to the May 12 meeting in London in defence of jailed WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange and whistleblower Chelsea Manning.

Australia: Rally to defend Julian Assange held in Broadmeadows, Melbourne

By our reporters, 14 May 2019

The event drew a small but determined crowd of SEP members and supporters, local workers, and WikiLeaks’ supporters.

Sweden reopens “preliminary investigation” and seeks extradition of Julian Assange

By Chris Marsden, 14 May 2019

No new evidence has been cited by Sweden’s deputy director of public prosecutions Eva-Marie Persson.

London public meeting demands the freedom of Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning

By our reporter, 13 May 2019

Speakers included leaders from the Socialist Equality Parties in Britain, Australia, the United States and Germany, with Clara Campos representing the Julian Assange Defence Committee.

Eugenics advocate Noah Carl dismissed from Cambridge University fellowship

By Thomas Scripps, 11 May 2019

Carl’s dismissal is a victory over a global campaign to revive far-right ideology on university campuses.

Free Assange NZ denounces hypocrisy at World Press Freedom Day event

By Tom Peters, 11 May 2019

Alex Hills from Free Assange New Zealand condemned the British government’s “brazen hypocrisy” and called on the media to “end the smears and lies about an anti-war hero.”

“We need to fight capitalism and change the whole system”

Uber and Lyft drivers conduct international strike

By our reporters, 9 May 2019

Thousands of Uber and Lyft drivers in the US and several other countries struck and protested Wednesday in advance of Uber’s Initial Public Offering (IPO) on the New York Stock Exchange Friday.

Pompeo lays down the law during UK visit

By Robert Stevens, 9 May 2019

The US secretary of state’s remit was to demand that the UK government toe the line in backing the geo-strategic imperatives of US imperialism… or else.

Local authority funding cuts worsen poverty and social inequality in Scotland

By Stephen Alexander, 9 May 2019

Scottish local authorities are imposing further cuts and increasing charges on vital services.

“We need to save his life. That’s how serious it is”

Pamela Anderson and WikiLeaks editor-in-chief visit Julian Assange in prison

By Laura Tiernan, 8 May 2019

Anderson condemned the state persecution of her friend as a “misrule of law in operation.”

UK government seeks to deny legal aid to Shamima Begum

By Paul Bond, 8 May 2019

Home Secretary Sajid Javid revoked Begum’s British citizenship last year, leaving her and her new-born baby stranded in appalling conditions and stateless.

UK: Renewed Brexit talks deepen splits in both Conservatives and Labour

By Robert Stevens, 7 May 2019

After the Tories lost more than 1,300 council seats last week and Labour also made smaller losses, May and Corbyn stressed that the electorate want Brexit to be implemented.

UK: Renewed Brexit talks deepen splits in both Conservatives and Labour

By Robert Stevens, 7 May 2019

After the Tories lost more than 1,300 council seats last week and Labour also made smaller losses, May and Corbyn stressed that the electorate want Brexit to be implemented.

Britain: National Union of Journalists World Press Freedom Day event ignores Julian Assange

By Paul Mitchell, 7 May 2019

At the NUJ’s World Press Freedom Day event, there was not a single mention of Assange by any of the speakers on the platform, all of whom claimed to be champions of press freedom.

Initial Grenfell fire inquiry report to make “withering criticism” of London Fire Brigade

By Tom Pearce, 6 May 2019

The focus on the LFB’s alleged failings conceals the fact that all the main factors that ensured such a horrific loss of life were present long before June 14, 2017.

UK: Defence minister’s sacking escalates Tory crisis amid rising UK/US tensions

By Robert Stevens, 4 May 2019

Williamson was sacked after an inquiry into who leaked the deliberations of a National Security Council meeting that approved Chinese telecom giant Huawei’s participation in the UK’s 5G data network.

French Yellow vest protesters travel to London to defend Julian Assange

4 May 2019

Protesters travelled across the English Channel to demand freedom for the persecuted Wikileaks journalist, who was sentenced Wednesday to spend 50 weeks in Belmarsh Prison while he is threatened with rendition to the United States.

“Today’s protest is a symbol of the fight for freedom”

French Yellow Vests join Assange extradition protest in London

By our reporters, 3 May 2019

WSWS reporters spoke to demonstrators outside Westminster Magistrates Court protesting plans to extradite the WikiLeaks founder to the US.

UK rail union calls off strikes against driver-only-operated trains

By Michael Barnes, 3 May 2019

The Conservative government is behind the plot to impose a huge cost-cutting and de-staffing operation on the railways

Julian Assange sentenced to 50 weeks in jail for bail violation in vindictive political ruling

By Robert Stevens, 1 May 2019

The sentence is part of ongoing efforts to ensure that Assange is extradited to the US, where he faces the savage wrath of the US ruling elite whose war crimes WikiLeaks courageously exposed.

Protester at Assange jail sentencing: “That was a declaration of an outlaw state”

By our reporter, 1 May 2019

WSWS reporters spoke to some of those protesting outside London’s Southwark Crown Court against the jailing of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

“He should never have been found fit to work in a million years!”

UK advice worker Terry Craven speaks on the terrible death of Stephen Smith

By Margot Miller, 1 May 2019

Smith, from Liverpool, died emaciated on April 15 aged 64, after suffering years of chronic ill health, yet still had been declared fit for work by the Department for Work and Pensions.

US threatens UK over Huawei involvement in 5G network

By Robert Stevens, 1 May 2019

After it was leaked that Huawei could help build the British 5G network, the Trump administration is threatening to shut Britain out of “Five Eyes” intelligence sharing.

UK: Liverpool man dies after being declared fit for work and denied benefits

By Barry Mason, 30 April 2019

Photos of Stephen Smith published in the Liverpool Echo at the time he was refused Employment Support Allowance are heart-breaking and caused widespread outrage.

Half of all land in England owned by less than one percent of the population

By Margot Miller, 27 April 2019

The aristocracy and gentry still own 30 percent of the land, while 18 percent is owned by corporations and a staggering 17 percent is in the possession of oligarchs and bankers.

UN official visits Julian Assange, investigating Ecuador’s illegal surveillance

By Mike Head, 26 April 2019

Confronted by worldwide protests and petitions, the British government felt compelled to grant the UN access to the imprisoned WikiLeaks founder.

UK: May unable to stem Tory crisis over Brexit, but still propped up by Corbyn

By Robert Stevens, 26 April 2019

For Corbyn’s faction, the political function of these talks over Brexit is to side-line a discussion on the political crisis facing the government that could precipitate a general election.

Protest in London’s Parliament Square demands release of Julian Assange

By our reporters, 25 April 2019

The lively demonstration organised by the Julian Assange Defence Campaign was supported by the Socialist Equality Party and World Socialist Web Site.

Grenfell fire survivors forced onto general housing waiting list

By Alice Summers, 25 April 2019

The Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea Council has announced the ending of the programme to rehouse Grenfell survivors.

Julian Assange was denied access to lawyers, visitors in Britain’s Belmarsh prison

By Oscar Grenfell, 24 April 2019

The reported denial of the WikiLeaks founder’s right to consult his legal counsel, for over a week, casts grave doubt that he will be afforded due process.

Scotland: Union suppresses teachers strike as lecturers fight on

By Darren Paxton, 24 April 2019

The teachers dispute has been closed down, but lecturers and education staff fight on.

George Galloway declares for Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party

By Chris Marsden, 24 April 2019

Having spent over three years hailing Corbyn as the left rebirth of Labour, Galloway now parrots the claim that Farage’s politics articulate the views of the working class on what he insists is the main issue of the day—Brexit.

Police arrest over 1,000 climate change protesters in London

By Robert Stevens, 23 April 2019

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has issued no statement condemning the mass arrest of peaceful protesters.

Privatisation of UK’s National Health Service escalates

By Ben Trent, 23 April 2019

An investigation found that over 1 million patients were forced to seek alternative treatment in the preceding five years due to the closure of nearly 450 GP surgeries.

Young journalist Lyra McKee shot dead in Northern Ireland

By Steve James, 22 April 2019

McKee was killed in the aftermath of a police raid on a house in the Creggan estate.

UK education system breaking apart after decade of cuts

By Tom Pearce, 22 April 2019

Funding per pupil in England continues to fall, with a further 3 percent drop to come in the next period.

UK home secretary demands climate change protesters face “full force of the law”

By Laura Tiernan, 20 April 2019

More than 682 climate change protesters have been arrested since Monday.

UK life expectancy continues to fall

By Dennis Moore, 19 April 2019

The fall in longevity appears to be a trend, with an analysis from the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries showing a decrease in life expectancy by two months last year and this year by six months.

Hundreds of peaceful climate change protesters arrested in UK

By Paul Mitchell, 18 April 2019

There have been no serious incidents of public disorder except when the police arrived in large numbers and swooped in to arrest people.

Britain’s Socialist Workers Party renews “rape allegations” witch-hunt of Julian Assange

By Chris Marsden, 18 April 2019

The SWP have joined in the efforts to railroad Assange and blacken his name, justifying a course of action that would end with the WikiLeaks editor facing a show trial in the US.

Thin layer of the UK population earn more than £150,000 per year

By Barry Mason, 17 April 2019

Over the last decade, the income and wealth of the affluent upper middle class has skyrocketed at the expense of the working class.

Over half of councils in England lose all government funding

By Margot Miller, 17 April 2019

Almost half of all local authorities will receive no central grant this year—10 times more than in 2017/2018 and three times more than last year.

Youth at climate rally in Leeds, England speak out to defend Julian Assange

By our reporters, 16 April 2019

WSWS reporters spoke about the arrest and imprisoning of Julian Assange with young people who attended last Friday’s rally against climate change in Leeds, England.

Largest UK department store chain, Debenhams, goes into administration

By Barry Mason, 16 April 2019

Last year saw the loss of nearly 150,000 retail jobs with the closure of 20,000 shops and restaurants.

Stop the extraordinary rendition of Julian Assange!

By Eric London, 15 April 2019

What is being presented as an extradition request by the US is so loaded with illegality that it would be more precise to call it an extraordinary rendition.

UK Labour leads “rape” smears against Julian Assange demanding Swedish extradition

By Laura Tiernan, 15 April 2019

This is the Blairites’ answer to global public outrage over Assange’s brutal seizure from the Ecuadorian embassy in London on Thursday.

Protest outside London’s Belmarsh prison demands release of Julian Assange

By our reporters, 15 April 2019

The WikiLeaks founder has been held at the maximum-security prison since his forcible seizure and arrest last Thursday.

Supporters protesting outside Belmarsh prison speak out in defense of Julian Assange

By our reporters, 15 April 2019

Protesters at Saturday’s demonstration to demand the release of Julian Assange from Belmarsh prison spoke to the World Socialist Web Site.

Socialist Equality Party (UK) member Robert Stevens speaks at rally to demand release of Assange from Belmarsh prison

By our reporter, 15 April 2019

Stevens said, “Join the fight to defend Assange, Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden. Workers and youth internationally must mobilise immediately to defend these class war prisoners.”

The Assange arrest is a warning from history

By Comment by John Pilger, 13 April 2019

John Pilger, well-known filmmaker and investigative journalist, issued the following statement on the arrest of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange in the Ecuadorian embassy in London on April 11.

“The fight starts now to prevent his extradition to the United States!”

Supporters to rally in defence of Assange outside Belmarsh Prison, London

By our reporters, 13 April 2019

The protests organised by the Julian Assange Defence Committee and supported by the Socialist Equality Party (UK) and the WSWS will be held from 4pm today.

Worldwide outrage over arrest of WikiLeaks publisher Julian Assange

By Niles Niemuth, 12 April 2019

After nearly seven years of confinement to the Ecuadorian embassy in London, Assange now faces the possibility of a year in a UK prison and extradition to the United States.

Amid corruption scandals and deals with IMF and Washington, Ecuador’s government betrays Assange

By Bill Van Auken, 12 April 2019

The handing over of Assange to his British and US persecutors is part of a sharp drive to the right by the corruption-stained government of Lenín Moreno.

Six-month Brexit extension resolves nothing for UK

By Robert Stevens, 12 April 2019

At best the European Union have kicked the can down the road, with no guarantees of a resolution.

Westminster Magistrates Court

Former UK ambassador Craig Murray denounces arrest and conviction of Julian Assange

By our reporter, 12 April 2019

“There was no jury and no chance to mount a proper defence or have a proper hearing. It is clear the judge was extremely prejudiced,” Murray said.

Free Julian Assange!

By Statement of the World Socialist Web Site Editorial Board, 12 April 2019

The World Socialist Web Site emphatically condemns the forcible seizure and arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

WikiLeaks exposes spying operation against Assange in Ecuador’s London embassy

By Oscar Grenfell, 11 April 2019

The Ecuadorian regime, acting as a vassal of the US, has surveilled every aspect of Assange’s life.

EU summit considers extension of Brexit deadline

By Robert Stevens, 10 April 2019

In another public humiliation, UK Prime Minister Theresa May met separately with the German Chancellor and French President, hoping to secure the backing of the EU’s two heavyweight powers.

UK cancer patients’ lives imperilled, suffering deepened by treatment delays

By Ajanta Silva, 10 April 2019

In England alone, more than 127,000 cancer patients have been left waiting more than two months to start their treatment over the last five years.

In leaked court testimony, Assange denounces his illegal detention

By Oscar Grenfell, 9 April 2019

The WikiLeaks founder declared: “No journalist, no citizen, should accept that what they speak about can be defined from day to day by reasons of political expediency.”

UK: Jury fails to reach verdict against top police officer over Hillsborough football disaster

By Barry Mason, 9 April 2019

Former Yorkshire police chief superintendent David Duckenfield was charged with the criminal offence of gross negligence manslaughter of 95 of the supporters.

Assange faces ongoing threats at Ecuador’s London embassy

By Oscar Grenfell, 8 April 2019

While the Ecuadorian government denied that Assange would be “imminently” expelled from the embassy, it did not dispute that plans had been afoot to terminate his political asylum.

Weekend vigils in London demand freedom for Assange

By our reporters, 8 April 2019

Alongside longstanding members of the Defend Assange Campaign, the London vigil was attended by members of the Socialist Equality Party and attracted support from far and wide.

UN Special Rapporteur: US extradition of Assange would be violation of international law

By Oscar Grenfell, 6 April 2019

The Ecuadorian regime, and its co-conspirators in the British and US governments, are engaged in a sordid and illegal conspiracy to terminate the political asylum of the WikiLeaks founder.

Supporters oppose eviction of Julian Assange outside London’s Ecuadorian embassy

By Paul Mitchell, 6 April 2019

Defenders of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange gathered outside the Ecuadorian embassy in central London yesterday, after a warning that he faces eviction from the building where he sought political asylum in 2012 “within hours to days.”