RACISM & NATIONAL CONSCIOUSNESS | NEWS/COMMENTARY


Report finds Israel still torturing Palestinians | Mel Frykberg

26 June 2009

Source: Electronic Intifada

RAMALLAH, occupied West Bank (IPS) – The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel has accused the Israeli security forces of deliberately shackling Palestinian prisoners in a painful and dangerous manner, amounting to a form of torture.

The report, “Shackling as a Form of Torture and Abuse,” based on the evidence of over 500 prisoners, was released in advance of the UN International Day in Support of Torture Victims Friday, 26 June.

It follows a report published in May by the UN Committee Against Torture that had criticized the continued mistreatment of Palestinian prisoners by Israel.

The UN report also condemned Israel’s refusal to allow access to a secret detention centre known only as Facility 1391.

The report by the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI) states that Israel’s various security agencies, chiefly the Continue reading

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Castro Says Could Release Prisoners for U.S. Talks
December 22, 2008, 2:47 am
Filed under: Caribbean | Tags: , , , , ,

free-the-cuban-five

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Dec. 18, 2008
Reprinted from Reuters

BRASILIA: President Raul Castro said on Thursday Cuba could release political prisoners as one of the “gestures” needed to pave the way for talks with incoming U.S. President Barack Obama.

It was Cuba’s most specific offer of a way to ease ties with the United States since Obama, who takes office on January 20, was elected in November.

“Let’s do gesture for gesture,” Castro told Continue reading

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Ramona Africa of MOVE: A Survivor of U.S. State Terrorism

Interview conducted by Steve da Silva

Source: Basics Issue #10 ( Aug/Sep 2008 )

On the 30th anniversary of Philadelphia police’s terroristic siege on the MOVE organization on August 8, 1978, Basics linked up with MOVE member Ramona Africa . Ramona Africa is the only living adult survivor of the Philadelphia police’s second major attack on MOVE’s home in 1985, where 11 people died, five of whom were children. The following is a transcript from our interview with her.

Basics: Ramona Africa, can you tell us about MOVE and its history?

Ramona Africa: The MOVE organization is a revolutionary organization founded by a man called John Africa. John Africa brought people together from all different religious, political, socio-economic backgrounds and made us a family, cementing the bond of our family with one common belief and that belief is life. Whether it’s the air, water, the earth that feeds us, human life, animal life, plant life – all life – is important and is our priority. Toward demonstrating our belief, our first public demonstrations were at the zoo, at the circus, at unsafe boarding homes for the elderly, at the reservoir and water treatment plant, at meetings held by DuPont chemicals, corporations like that who poisoned the environment…

Basics: How long ago was that?

Ramona Africa: This was in the early 1970s. Because we demonstrated and put out such clear information about the wisdom of John Africa, the government started hearing what we were saying and seeing our example. They wanted to stop us from waking people up and setting an example for people. They initially tried to co-opt us by offering us by offering us funding and offices. But we made it clear that we didn’t want anything from them and we didn’t need anything from them. So when they couldn’t use that soft soap with us they came with the iron fist of brutality. When we would set up a peaceful demonstration at some institution of this system, they would come and tell us that we couldn’t demonstrate. We confronted them about it and said “Why, what are you talking about? Isn’t this America where people have freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom to protest? Does the constitution say, except MOVE?” Of course, they didn’t want to hear that, so that’s when the beatings began. Our brothers would be beaten bloody into Continue reading

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