Mittwoch, 24. November 2010

UK and Italy again rocked by militant student protests - Portugal shut down by historic mass strike (video update Italy)

BBC reports here live from today's Student Protest in the United Kingdom. This afternoon police were kettling in thousands of student protesters who were trying to force their way into the Parlament Square in central London (the same scenes here in a very impressive video, turned on the ground, with a lot of "free speech" from pupils & students). Occupations, teach-ins and walkouts have been reported throughout the country, upon which the new center-right government of David Cameron tries to impose higher university fees and all sorts of cuts. There were violent skirmishes in London going on until night.

Occupations and walkouts across the UK against cuts (Indymedia UK)

Day X live coverage of student protests across Britain (Chronology of events from Socialist Worker, UK)

Day X: Student protests in pictures (Socialist Worker)

Pictures from Leeds student protest by Charlotte Groves (Socialist Worker)

British Students Leave Classes Over Cuts (New York Times, with photos)

More Violence Erupts At Student Protests (Sky News, UK, with several videos & photos)

Tuition fee protests turn into a riot again (Belfast Telegraph)

Student tuition fee protesters dispersed by police (BBC)

Fees demo brings chaos to streets (Harrow Observer, West London)

Student protests: School's out across the UK as children take to the streets (The Guardian, UK, with video)

Interview with an anarchist student occupier at Sheffield University (The Fargate Speaker via Libcom, UK)

Student protests: Wagner's a riot for revoltings students (Daily Star, UK)

Student protests turn ugly (ITNews Video, UK, from Youtube)

Des milliers d'étudiants manifestent à Londres (Le Figaro, France)

Handgemenge bei Studentenprotesten in London (Reuters Video via FAZ, Germany)

From Xinhua News Agency / People's Daily Online, China:

"University students on Wednesday assaulted the Italian Senate to protest against the new education reform, while hundreds of other students clashed with the police across the country.

Over 2,000 students marched up to the Senate, forced the entrance door and threw tear gases, eggs and stones at the windows, as state TV Rai reported. Police intervened to push back the students out of the parliament. Eight cops have been injured in the riots, while several students either swooned or were harmed.

Rome was blocked in a total chaos for nearly the entire day. Other groups of students staged dramatic happenings and flash mobs in front of the House, wearing ropes around their hands and necks yelling the slogan: "The government is strangling us but we will set ourselves free from its tyranny."

The students called for the government's resignation, especially that of Education Minister Maria Stella Gelmini, condemning the cuts in the education budget and the new reform aimed at increasing merit and the role of private universities.

The student blitz is the first in its kind in recent Italian history against an institutional body, quite symbolic of the current political turmoil the government is facing and the threat of an early vote.

Other students occupied Rome's central La Sapienza University, climbing on the roof of the building and shouting at who ever tried to reach them. The only MP who climbed on the roof with them in sign of solidarity was the leading opposition party secretary Pierluigi Bersani, who exploited the youth dissent in view of a government fall.

In other Italian cities, students and young researchers occupied universities, schools and institutes. In the town of Siena railways tracks were blocked for several hours in sign of protest, causing the cancellation of trains and blocking the station for hours. Also foreign students took part in the mass demonstrations.

The climate of social tensions is thus degenerating. Last time students staged such extreme mass protests was in the 1970's at the time of the global student mobilization phase."

See also

Pisa students occupy the local airport (Youtube)

Student protests in Italy against education cuts (World Socialist Web Site)

For more actual informations, see the Site. Italy

Proved excellent since Roman times: the testudo or tortoise formation (Schildkrötenpanzer-Taktik)

(from Der Standard, Austria)

The Portuguese staged a massive general strike Wednesday in protest against spending cuts. It was the first joint general strike of Portugal’s two biggest unions since 1988. Like Greece, Italy, Ireland, Spain and other states, the country has recently become the target and victim of the financial markets, that is to say banks, speculators and neoliberal international institutions (European Union, European Central Bank, International Monetary Fund).

Strike paralyses Portugal, angry student protest in UK (Nine O'Clock, Romania)

Unions bring Portugal to a grinding halt as Irish-style bailout looms (The Guardian, UK)

Portuguese on general strike against austerity (Reuters via Arab News)

Portugal shut down by general strike (Libcom, UK)

Como a greve geral está a afectar o país (Jornal de negocios, Portugal, with photos)

Spain, Portugal in line for bail-out ? (AP via St. Petersburg Times, Florida)

Fears Mount Over Spain, and Risks to the Euro (New York Times)

Students protesting today during a rally on Leeds University campus, UK

(Photo by Charlotte Groves)

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