“March is the month of expectation, the things we do not know, The persons of prognostication are coming now. We try to sham becoming firmness, But pompous joy betrays us…In march winter is holding back and spring is pulling forward.”
– Emily Dickenson
From now on, the “News” pages will be updated sporadically, probably only once a week.
For those desperate to get information each day, I recommend:
(type in “clash police” or “wildcat strike” or “riot” or whatever into the search box at the top and you’ll get lots of headlines with those words in them; make sure you get the right wording – “riots” will get you different headlines from “riot”, “lashes police” will get you different headlines from “clashes police”)
(a French site with lots of links and videos to English or other language sites; on the right hand side there’s a list of links to specific situations, including stuff like ethnic riots or things that have nothing independent about them; you click on them and get several links dealing with the events of any particular day)
Obviously there are other sites, but you’ll probably do your own research if you want the very latest information, and if you want to – post information in the comments boxes below.
There are obviously significant limits to providing links to information about situations I know little about. Some of this might give people the idea that struggle is advancing or happening far more than it in fact is, and may even blind people to the contradictions and complexities of any specific situation. However, despite the inevitable limitations, I will continue to put up links if only as a method of keeping a record of events, though this will be reduced compared with previous years.
“Reading the morning newspaper is the realist’s morning prayer. One orients one’s attitude toward the world either by God or by what the world is. The former gives as much security as the latter, in that one knows how one stands. ”
Due to lack of time and/or lack of linguistic knowledge, some of the following has been Google Translated sometimes without correcting obvious mistakes and this even when I’m familiar with the language
“‘Dildos are not essential items’…An Amazon worker has gone viral for speaking out against the e-commerce giant in a press conference after employees across the country walked out on the job in protest of work conditions amid the COVID-19 crisis….”
Tunisia, Mnihla (Ariana): roads blocked with burning tyres as residents protest delay in payment of exceptional social aid decided by state to help poor families overcome difficulties linked to pandemic
“Many demonstrators blocked the road in front of the Mnihla delegation headquarters on Monday and burned tires. Some tried to enter the headquarters of the delegation, but the police intervened …In Ettadhamen, protesters gathered in front of the delegation’s headquarters and the police station, to claim social assistance and transport permits in order to be able to work…Law enforcement intervened to disperse the crowd and prevent people from assembling as a preventative measure against covid-19. Representatives of civil society tried to convince the demonstrators of the need to respect the measures of total containment and to wait for the arrival of social assistance which should not be delayed“. Tunisia has had just 14 deaths (out of a total population of 11.5 million) since the first case a month ago.
Israel, Jerusalem: ultra-orthodox Haredi, defying their elders, hurl stones at cops after being fined equivalent of 1,250€ for going out
“Iran had temporarily released around 100,000 prisoners as part of measures taken to contain the pandemic, leaving an estimated 50,000 people behind bars, including violent offenders and so-called “security cases,” often dual nationals and others with Western ties. Families of detainees and Western nations say Iran is holding those prisoners for political reasons or to use them as bargaining chips in negotiations… a riot broke out at Adel Abad Prison…prisoners broke cameras and caused other damage … No one was wounded and no one escaped.” More here…Prisoner describes riot and tyrannical prison regime
“..five inmates managed to flee and … one has already been recaptured…”
A friend wrote: “the automatic reaction of many prisoners now is to attack, and the automatic reaction of the majority of the so-called free is to surrender. With this in mind, it’s also interesting to notice that one of the most pertinent texts written on this phenomena was written already in 1946:
“Of course this transformation of a human being from an individual, whose essence is continuity of experience and memory, into a unit of atomized reactions is carried further among the trapped victims than among the population at large. But the difference is only in degree, and if we only cite examples from reports from the detention camps, it must always be remembered that the population at large was aware of both mass arrests and the terror within the concentration camps. Thus the terror actually visited upon the bodies of Jews, ‘radicals,’ Poles, etc., terrorized the minds of all, which was indeed its primary function.
The breakdown of memory and experience has been described by a German psychologist, Kurt Bondy, who was himself in a concentration camp for a time:
This uncertainty about the duration of the imprisonment is probably what unnerves the men most. . . . They try to forget. The past becomes uncertain and nebulous, the picture of their family and friends indistinct. . . . Here are the roots of hopelessness, apathy, indifference, despair, distrust, and egocentricity. (“Problems of Internment Camps, Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 1943.)
“During the afternoon and evening of this Sunday, incidents were registered in some parts of the capital in the framework of the Day of the Young Combatant. This, despite the curfew and total quarantine in some communes to combat the spread of coronavirus. In Villa Francia, Central Station, in the afternoon a march and cultural event took place. However, later in the commune there was a burning of a Transantiago bus and confrontations between unknown persons and police personnel. Preliminarily, it was indicated that two policemen were injured after the subjects launched projectiles towards a police patrol. In Huechuraba, a commune in which total quarantine was decreed, riots were also reported during the night. In addition to registering some barricades, police reported via Twitter “violent incidents against the personnel of the 54th police station.” On the other hand, Transantiago reported that the buses of the capital’s public transport finished their routes early in the afternoon. This was reported through their social networks, where they noted that “due to barricades and assaults on buses, dispatches of services are suspended since there are no security conditions on the roads.”
Paraguay, Asuncion: about 20 or so people attack a naval military base because of restrictions on goods imposed by the crisis
“Around 19:00 this Sunday, a mob of misfits began to riot in front of a military detachment located in the Itá Enramada area. Rear Admiral Jorge Mancuello told TODAY that this group, made up of about 20 people, used several…type firecrackers, in addition to burning covers and throwing stones at the entrance to the site. Apparently, they were smugglers who oppose the strict controls imposed by the authorities to prevent the illegal entry of merchandise by that sector of the capital.”
“In the afternoon of March 28, detainees at Alvand Prison in western Iran’s city of Hamedan mutinied because the inhuman mullahs’s regime refuses to release them during the coronavirus epidemic . Several of them managed to escape. The guards and the pasdarans opened fire. In clashes between prisoners and law enforcement, fire broke out in sections of the prison and the fire continued for a long time. Also the day before, following mutinies in Khorramabad and Aligoudarz prisons, inmates at Saghez prison mutinied and a large number escaped. The situation in prisons is deteriorating day by day. A number of detainees, in particular in Oroumieh prison, Fashafouyeh detention center in Greater Tehran and Ghezel-Hessar detention center died from coronavirus.“
“Serious tensions in southern Italy: first looting in supermarkets and calls for rebellion
Citizens in difficulty due to the crisis launch aggressive messages on social networks, with calls for revolt.
The health emergency is also becoming, as feared, a social emergency in southern Italy: Fearful social protests are feared and the first looting has begun, forcing supermarkets to equip themselves with special vigilance. A cry of alarm emerges strongly from the south, echoed by Italian mayors and Italian intelligence services warning the government: “The people are hungry.” The signals are many and dramatic, turning viral in a few hours. One of them is a video of a father and his daughter biting a slice of bread with Nutella; In a threatening tone he addresses Prime Minister Conte and the Mayor of Palermo in a threatening tone: “If my daughter will not be able to eat a piece of bread, we will storm the supermarkets.”
Precisely in Palermo, an organized group of twenty people appeared, before the boxes of a Lidl supermarket – in Viale Regione, one of the largest and most frequented in Palermo – with their carts full of products, refusing to pay while shouting : «Enough of being at home, we don’t have money to pay, we have to eat». The employees of the supermarket called the police and police, while panic spread among the large public waiting in the street, queuing with a safety distance of one meter between people. The chaos went on for hours. To avoid the worst, law enforcement agencies are watching today to protect supermarkets in Palermo and other cities.
Calls to revolts
Calls to revolt spread like wildfire on social media. The profile of a group called “Noi” has been opened on Facebook, which encourages the revolt with a slogan: “Take back what is taken from us.” Within hours, he had hundreds of followers, some of whom are organized via chat. Their messages leave no room for doubt. There are those who say: “Those who are ready for war on the 3rd (date foreseen for the end of the emergency, although it is certain that the government will decree an extension), must write it down here”, “we must break all the supermarkets ». Another writes: “The problem is immediate, the children must eat.”
Alexander’s message is similar: «I don’t wait for April, I am without a euro, my family must eat». Many play videos, showing their identity, calling for social revolt, making their own children see. Luky shouts in one of those videos: «At home there may be those who have a fixed salary, if we must be locked up, the State has to bring us food and must pay the rent, we are not Cristiano Ronaldo: Here three quarters of Italians works in black; Rebel! ». According to a recent study by the CGIL (main Italian union), in Palermo and province one worker in three works in black.
Robberies on the street
The call for looting of supermarkets is not only in Sicily, it extends to other places in the south. In that half of Italian territory, the underground economy employs almost four million people. In Campania, particularly in some areas of the province of Naples, robberies on the street have increased, with people removing bags with products that some customers have just bought in supermarkets. Rare is the day where in some southern provinces there is no assault on a pharmacy. There are people who shout their anguish and hunger from the balcony: In Bari, the capital of Apulia, the Minister for Social Affairs, Francesca Bottaloci, had to personally appear to bring two packages of basic necessities to a family she had placed in social networks a video screaming from the balcony of his house: «We no longer have money, we have nothing. Come see it ».
The so-called 007, the information service, has produced a confidential report sent to Prime Minister Conte and Interior Minister Lamorgese with this warning: «There is a potential danger of spontaneous and organized revolts and rebellions, especially in southern Italy , where the underground economy and the capillary presence of organized crime are two of the main risk factors ». It does not escape anyone that the mafias are always ready to take advantage of any explosive occasion. For mafia organizations, the coronavirus represents an optimal opportunity for their criminal businesses.
That risk of the mafia warns the mayor of Palermo, Leoluca Orlando, who warns that organized crime will take advantage to lead the revolts. The alderman of the Sicilian capital asks the government to grant a survival income: «Alongside many who are living through this moment of very serious crisis with anguish but with dignity, there are groups of jackals and protest professionals who promote violent actions, characters and groups that show and claim their membership in the mafia. I ask all citizens to report them to the police authorities, “warns the mayor of Palermo.
There are several council members who sound the alarm, including some from an area with high crime, Campania, where the Camorra considers that a golden opportunity presents itself. Ciro Buonajuto, mayor of Herculaneum, threatened by the camorra, has denounced: «We have a youth unemployment of 75%, who works in many cases in precarious employment; now I fear the economic and social effects: usury, drug trafficking, camorra business can spread … ».
“Attentive to the south, it can explode”
The unrest in the “Mezzogiorno” is echoed by the minister for the south, Peppe Provenzano, who in an interview today tells Repubblica: «Attentive to the south, it can explode. We must act quickly, the maintenance of democracy is at risk. You have to extend the income of citizenship ”(this is economic aid, around 550 euros on average, offered by the State to those who do not have a job).
In this context of a very serious crisis caused by the coronavirus, the dramatic speech that the President of the Republic, Giorgio Mattarella, addressed to the country on Friday night, is also explained: “We are living a sad page of our history. We have seen images that will be impossible to forget. Some territories, and particularly the older generations, are paying a steep price. Europe must understand the seriousness of the threat, or it will be too late. Further common initiatives are indispensable – added Mattarella-, overcoming old schemes that are already out of the reality of the dramatic conditions in which our Continent finds itself ».
The well-known Italian scientist Silvio Garatini has said these days: «The meaning of life comes before the meaning of business. But someone has reversed the priorities. ” Thinking of Europe, a diplomat said it in other words: “When you count the dead, you don’t count the billions.”
Apparently the mafia have been stockpiling food and then giving it out so as to play their usual role of “Welfare State” or the protective Godfather. Of course, most of this is propaganda designed to minimise and calumnise the autonomous aspects of what’s going on. And of course, the Mafia and the legal state are so often in cahoots, even if each plays the role of being against the other…As always, but particularly during this Confusionavirus, what’s going on really is enveloped in extremely dense fog.
“Tensions in the country’s prisons continue. This Saturday afternoon, around twenty detainees refused to return to their cells at Jamioulx prison. The detainees started several fires in the courtyard. In particular to bikes under repair (the Villos of Brussels [ local state-provided bikes] which are repaired in Jamioulx). It took the intervention of 60 police to impose calm and allow the firefighters to extinguish the start of the fires. The fire that did the most damage – to an office – was put out . The inmates broke the window before setting fire to the interior. Firefighters and ambulances were still on site this Saturday evening at 7 p.m. But no one was injured. The detainees wanted to resume visits by relatives. Visits have been impossible since confinement. Some also wanted to get out of prison or be placed on a surveillance bracelet to avoid possible contagion by the coronavirus. The damage was significant and the detainees were confined to their cells for 48 hours before being able to go out again. Other similar incidents have disrupted other prisons across the country in recent days. Everywhere it’s the coronavirus epidemic that is causing concern and frustration among inmates. Prison staff are also in difficulty. Without sufficient sanitary means and chronically understaffed.” Video here.
South Africa, Johannesburg: cops fire rubber bullets, use whips, to enforce social distancing at supermarket queue
Nigeria, Katsina: young man killed as youths burn down police station and Divisional Police Officers’ quarters following ban on Friday prayers; 7 vehicles and 10 motorbikes also torched
This may have been instigated by a religious leader.
Panama: virus-related looting in 2 towns (videos and links)
“Residents of Santa Cruz in Curundú looted a store in the sector and staged a protest, asserting that they had received neither government bonds nor food bags, in the midst of the coronavirus quarantine. At 6:30 p.m., groups … began to bang pots, burn garbage trucks and demand the arrival of official aid. The situation turned into chaos around 8:45 p.m., when dozens of people forced their way into a grocery store and took out everything they could“
Steelworkers at the Sidenor plant protesting over being forced to work in unsafe conditions were attacked by the cops, a force controlled by the joint Socialist and Podemos government. Podemos, surprise surprise, are turning on the working class after pledging to fight austerity measures.
“On Friday, March 27, 2020, prisoners in the Saqqez Prison in Kurdistan rebelled in protest against the mullahs’ refusal to release them amid the Coronavirus outbreak. A large number of prisoners managed to escape after clashes with the IRGC forces and prison guards. The IRGC-affiliated Fars News Agency reported that the 80 prisoners had escaped. Subsequently, repressive forces were deployed across the city to recapture fugitive prisoners. The regime was forced to dispatch forces from nearby towns to Saqqez to control the situation. On Thursday, March 26, 2020, prisoners in sections 7 and 9 of Tabriz Prison, who were exposed to Coronavirus, also rebelled. The guards brutally opened fire on defenseless inmates and wounded at least seven. The prisoners disarmed and clashed with the guards. Several prisoners managed to escape. Previously, inmates in Aligudarz Central Prison and Khorramabad Prison had rebelled with some managing to escape. Many prisoners were killed or injured as a result of the repressive forces that opened fire on them. Contrary to its propaganda, and while the Coronavirus is widespread in prisons, the mullahs’ regime, has not only refused to release prisoners even temporarily, but also has continued to imprison new inmates without quarantining them. So far, several infected prisoners have died in Greater Tehran Central Penitentiary (Fashafouyeh), in Urmia and in other prisons.”
“A serious incident occurred during the return to the courtyard of Lantin prison this Friday afternoon, at the end of which six detainees sought refuge on the roof of a prison block. Following this incident, the guards decided to launch a 24-hour strike, starting at 10 p.m. this evening. The common union front of guards at Lantin prison (Juprelle) filed a strike notice on Friday evening. From Friday 10 p.m. to Saturday 10 p.m., the prison will therefore operate with minimum service. According to union representatives present on the scene, when the courtyard was brought in, an inmate rebelled and tried to climb onto a roof. He then fell and guards intervened to rescue him. A dozen other inmates of the prison then assaulted them: three officers were injured and taken to the hospital, which they left in the evening…Six inmates have entrenched themselves on the roof of Block U of the sentencing home. At 7:30 p.m., the police were on site and were trying to dislodge them. The mayor declared that shortly after 9:30 p.m. the 6 detainees were still there. The other detainees have joined their cells and the situation in this area is under control. The reasons for this incident are that…living conditions in prison have been made more difficult with the coronavirus crisis since inmates are notably no longer entitled to visits. With the Coronavirus epidemic, Lantin prison, like others, has been facing increasing tension in recent days. The detainees are confined 23 hours a day in cells, visits have been suppressed as well as all activities proposed within the prison.“
“Police checks aimed at enforcing social distancing measures have degenerated in Brussels. Significant resources had to be mobilized. A police check degenerated this Friday, March 27, in Schaerbeek, a borough of Brussels, reports the daily La Capitale. At around 6 p.m., a patrol attempted to control a group of four young people, who had gathered in a square, in violation of the rules of social distancing. One of them then rebelled and started to agitate amongst passersby, creating a crowd…A dozen police cars and four other patrols had to be mobilized… Law enforcement officials were forced to use tear gas to disperse the surrounding crowd. The four youths behind the crowd were arrested. “The rebel youth was judicially deprived of his liberty, and reports were issued against the other three for failing to comply with measures to ban gatherings,” … This Friday, March 27, the Belgian authorities decided to extend the containment measures until April 18, instead of April 4, the date previously announced.
China, Hubei: heavy clashes with cops More here (in Mandarin)
“Despite being the largest grocery chain in the U.S., Kroger has yet to give its workers’ hazard pay, unlike other chains like Safeway, H-E-B, and Giant Eagle. Workers complain that the company has not taken adequate steps to protect themselves against COVID-19. The Memphis workers join a growing wave of wildcat strikes of workers being forced to work through COVID-19 pandemic in what many see as the beginning wave of strike action that the United States has not seen since the great General Strikes of the 1930s. “Half the workers have gone home. They scared for their safety. The ones that is here, they so tense they scared to touch the equipment,” said Wiggins, who had worked 97 hours on a mandatory seven-day-a-week shift. After the company was slow in letting the union know about the positive COVID-19 test results, most workers chose to walk off the job.”
Mexico: virus provokes looting in 10 different municipalities, involving 30 different shops, over 2 days …Chihuahua: riot against increased water extraction from dam
“Since Thursday morning, at least four official vehicles from Conagua were burned by farmers in retaliation for the agency’s refusal to close the gates [of a dam]. Members of the National Guard and several farmers faced stones, when the latter managed to seize a Sedena truck to set it on fire.” Not directly related to the virus. But following the victory of the farmers who rioted, the governor claimed that he reversed the decision for “sanitary reasons”, given the fact that the riot involved crowds of people gathered together in one place.
“…after the protests by hunger strike of the prisoners in some Iranian prisons, due to the poor prison conditions and the spread of the corona virus and even the deaths of several prisoners, the prisoners in some wards of Tabriz Central Prison, a city in the northwestern country have rebelled. According to the official reporting from the state news agencies, the police forces have besieged areas all around and heard gun shotings. The hypocritical and oppressive Shia Islamic Caliphate has attacked the defenseless prisoners with tear gas and direct gunfire and has also injured several of the prisoners “
Argentina, Santa Fe: Prison riot sparked by prisoners demanding better hygene and health protection for potential Coronavirus
“Prisoners from two pavilions started fires that sparked new confrontations with the agents of the Penitentiary Service, with the balance of three injured inmates, who had to be hospitalized.
The riots occurred in pavilions 1 and 5 of the prison, which has a total of 1060 inmates. At those two points the prisoners came out into the hallway and began burning mattresses and urging other inmates to bow to the mutiny. Agents from the Special Penitentiary Operations Group (GOEP) broke into the conflict zone and new clashes ensued. Three detainees were admitted to the Cullen hospital in Santa Fe. One of them reportedly lost an eye, hit by rubber pellets during the repression.
The climate was once again rarefied in Penal Unit No. 2 due to delays in the entry of food that relatives bring to the inmates, which until Monday was closed, although it was allowed again after the bloody riots. “The problem is that inside the” bagayos “(the packages that carry the visits) the drug enters the jail. And since it was prohibited, narcotics are not entering the jail, something that alters the inmates,” said a senior official. of the Santa Fe government.
“The problems that erupted in the Santa Fe prisons will not end in one day, because the structural crisis of the penitentiary system, with an overpopulation of more than 1,000 inmates, added the specific inconveniences caused by the pandemic,” he assured LA NATION, the Undersecretary for Penitentiary Affairs and Policies, Héctor Acuña.
So far, there are no inmates or agents of the Penitentiary Service infected with coronavirus. The inmates’ claim, which began in the Coronda prison – where inmate Alan Montenegro, a member of the Barrabrava de Colón died – and expanded almost at the same time to Las Flores and Piñero prison, arose because the inmates were demanding more Hygiene and health measures in the pavilions due to the danger of contagion of coronavirus.
The riots broke out a day after the Provincial Public Service for Criminal Defense presented a habeas corpus in which it denounced “deficiencies that violate human rights” and “non-compliance with the sanitary measures that should be adopted in the framework of the pandemic” .
On Tuesday afternoon, the Santa Fe criminal judge Susana Luna ordered the authorities of the provincial Penitentiary Service to implement a series of sanitary measures to prevent the circulation of the coronavirus in prison establishments.
The prisoners of Las Flores denounced today that they did not have water nor to hydrate themselves. Is that the prison was totally destroyed after the riot. The mutineers broke pipes and the entire electrical installation. Not only did they set fire to part of the pavilions, but they looted and burned the pharmacy, the infirmary, the school and the work rooms.
Judge Luna’s ruling also contemplated that inmates, as well as prison officers, should take their body temperature permanently in order to detect any possible symptoms of Covid-19.
In dialogue with LA NACION, the head of the Provincial Public Service of Provincial Criminal Defense, Jaquelina Balangione, stated: “We have been denouncing the serious situation of the Santa Fe prisons for a long time, with an overpopulation of more than 1,000 inmates, but which is now adding to the coronavirus crisis. ”
“Life in prisons is inhumane, with overcrowded and unhealthy conditions that are more serious at this time,” said the official, who asked prosecutors and judges in Santa Fe to speed up instances to decongest prisons through house arrests. , transitory exits and parole.
“At this time it is crucial to solve the prison overcrowding,” he said, while specifying that in the provincial penitentiaries “there is capacity for 5758 inmates and there are currently 6667.”
The focus of the tension is in the Las Flores prison, where the most violent riot occurred, where four inmates of one of the two pavilions arrested for sexual crimes were killed. Police and Prison Service officers found three fully charred bodies. But the concern of government officials is also about the two largest prisons: Coronda and Piñero.” More here
“The coronavirus in Belgium has led to strict containment measures implemented ten days ago to contain its spread. These have resulted in tensions in some prisons in the country which turned into rebellions this Wednesday evening in Leuze-en-Hainaut and Arlon.
The coronavirus brings prisons to boiling point. Wednesday evening, a series of detainees refused to return to their cells after the courtyard, in Leuze-en-Hainaut and Arlon. This Thursday morning two prisoners were still “recalcitrant” but everything is now back to normal, says the spokesman for the Prison Administration, Kathleen Van De Vijver.
Shortly after 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, the police force of the area of Tournaisis went to the prison of Leuze-en-Hainaut, where a group of prisoners still refused to return to the cells. Since confinement, the yards are insured but restricted to small groups of prisoners.
“At 5 p.m., there were 21 prisoners outside. At the end of the courtyard, eight of them refused to return to their cell. They demanded on the one hand more call credits for their telephone and also a full canteen. Currently, some products (crisps, cigarettes, soft drinks, cookies …), supplied by a supermarket, are not available. But as of next Monday, we should be restocked, “explains Kathleen Van De Vijver.
Two detainees were still in the courtyard on Thursday morning, but have now agreed to return. At Arlon prison, about thirty prisoners who refused to return to their cells Wednesday evening, after the courtyard. The police arrived at around 10:15 p.m. and began a discussion with the detainees, who then agreed to return.
“However, eight leaders have been provisionally placed in think tanks pending disciplinary proceedings,” said Kathleen Van De Vijver. Until April 5, at least, all prisoners are denied access and they no longer have any common activity (sports, library, lessons). The three daily meals are provided as well as the yards, the logistical tasks (cooking, cleaning …) and workshops for external firms.”
France, Argenteuil: blue collar workers at car parts firm walk out over lack of protection, complaining about management and other white collar workers being allowed to work through the internet
“…most managers stay at home and telecommute. But in warehouses, it’s another story for employees who feel more and more in danger. A feeling of injustice is mounting in many companies …Since Wednesday, the leading firm in online sales of automotive spare parts has been operating at a slow pace, faced with a strike and the right to withdraw from some of the employees of its warehouses in Argenteuil and Cergy-Pontoise (Val-d’Oise).
The site has not been properly disinfected
“We had no other choice,” explains a staff representative, speaking on condition of anonymity. Management refused to make every effort to guarantee the safety of employees in its warehouses. Several of them who are in confinement have symptoms of Covid-19. The site has not been properly disinfected and all the trays and work tools are therefore potentially contaminated. This increases the risk of the virus spreading and puts the health of employees at risk ”. …”Installed in the 8th arrondissement of Paris, often telecommuting, middle management and the directors are much better protected than other employees”, quips Hichem Aktouche who wonders: “Is Oscaro a sector so vital that it justifies endangering employees by forcing them to work? “…This theme of health inequality within companies has been resounding for a few days, all the more so since the health authorities call on the population to stay as confined as possible. “The life of a supermarket cashier, a postman, is worth no less than that of a computer engineer in telework”…”There is an impression of injustice between what can be called blue-collar and white-collar workers, but also between those on short-term contracts and those with permanent ones”, warns Cyril Chabanier, president of the CFTC… “The feeling of inequality is starting to mount in our country and we have to be careful about that,” he adds….”all those on secure contracts were asked to stay at home whilst those on short-term ones we told to come to work”….The CGT demands a clarification on the so-called vital sectors for the country in order to avoid exposing employees unnecessarily. Union officials are unanimous in saying that “we must provide each employee with sanitary equipment …”
It should be pointed out that, despite certain radical sites listing current “strikes” in France as some kind of wildcat they’re not exactly that, as in France you have the automatic right to stop work if you consider the conditions are insecure. In fact, there have been several of these walkouts over France, which are protected by this right to withdraw your labour for health and safety reasons, and almost invariably involving the unions (for a critique from 2017, mainly of the CGT, see this). I have not listed most of them .
Cambodia, Phnom Penh: 1000 garment workers protest outside factory over unpaid wages “due to declining payments from buyers during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic”
Workers in the metal, chemical and paper industries went out on strike in the Lazio and Lombardy regions over health concerns. The CGIL, CISL and UIL union centrals reached an agreement with the government and decided not to support the strike despite pressure from rank and file workers. Nevertheless at least 60% of the membership of these unions in these regions came out on strike and were joined by workers in the civil service.
“Protest in Honduras because of lack of supplies against coronavirus.
The protests were sparked after eight days of quarantine for the health emergency.
With the use of tear gas, the Honduran police faced protests by several citizens on Tuesday due to the lack of food and the curfew imposed because of Covid-19, local media reported.
According to local media reports, the protests began on the North Boulevard of the Honduran capital, led by transporters who demand that the government allow them to work because they depend on it for their daily livelihood.
In addition, there were other groups in different points of the capital, that demanded to be allowed to work for the distribution of food.
The riots peaked on the North Boulevard when protesters erected barricades with burning tires to close streets.
One of the groups was that of the workers in the transport area – drivers, collectors and dispatchers – whose units remain paralyzed before the curfew. They claim to have no food for their families because they subsist on a daily basis.
This group was joined by another in the La Popular neighborhood, which demands that the government allow them to circulate to earn their livelihood.
“We don’t have food, as long as they don’t support us we won’t move from here,” said one of the neighbors. “We need milk, diapers and food,” he added.
Honduras, with 36 confirmed cases of the new coronavirus, has declared a “health emergency” across the country, has closed its borders and imposed a curfew that is “absolute” in six cities.
In addition, the government announced on Monday that it will provide food aid to 800,000 families.”
Apparently students had demanded the end of classes due to the virus, but a teacher had then ignored this, so students tried to force the class to close down. Cops were called, students were arrested. Students then blocked the highway and clashes ensued with the filth and a student was killed.
“During the morning of this Tuesday, detonations of firearms were heard and a fire was recorded in one of the patios of the La Modelo prison in Cúcuta.
While some family members were preparing to enter the penitentiary center with the aim of giving prisoners personal hygiene items, shots were heard inside the prison.
At least 250 inmates attacked the guards and set fire to mats. Inmates throw rocks and threaten Inpec members with artisan-made weapons.
The situation is critical, from the roofs of neighboring houses and nearby hills, amateur videos have been recorded showing a group of inmates running on the roof of the prison and guards from Inpec shooting to neutralize the inmates.
In another video that circulates on social networks, black smoke is evident around one of the courtyards, the product of a fire that occurs inside the prison.
So far, several ambulances have gone to the detention center and leave for nearby medical centers. According to the authorities, 3 uniformed soldiers are reported injured.
Some relatives have released audios sent by inmates from inside the prison. They denounce abuse of power by Inpec and affirm that several inmates remain wounded.
The mutiny does not stop and the Cúcuta Metropolitan Police controls the main access to the prison. The mobile riot squad intervened to contain the family members’ claims. The out-of-jail landscape is tense.
“They are running us with tear gas, we need control entities. There is no presence of the Defensoría or Procuraduría, there are many abuses against the wives and mothers of the inmates, ”said Angela Ochoa, member of the Association of Family and Friends of the Prisoners of Cúcuta (Asofamintercuc).
Last Saturday there was a riot that left four inmates and an injured guardian in Cúcuta. The event occurred simultaneously with excesses that occurred in other penitentiaries in Colombia.”
“Inmates of Penitentiary Unit 4 of the Entre Ríos city of Concepción del Uruguay burned mattresses and carried out a riot on Tuesday that was controlled to demand “better sanitary conditions” and in rejection of the cancellation of family visits in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Despite the fact that shots had been heard, and that some prisoners had even climbed to the roof area, there were no injuries or escapes from inmates, police sources reported.
The conflict originated in pavilion 1 of the southeast sector of the prison and continued in the rest of the facilities, where they threw stones, took control of the pavilions, burned mattresses, and climbed the walls.
Faced with this situation, police and prison personnel began a containment operation inside and outside the prison through “rubber bullet” shots.
According to spokesmen from the Concepción Police Department of Uruguay, the inmates requested “better sanitary conditions” and asked for house arrest for the “prisoners at risk” of getting the coronavirus.
They also protested the apparent decline in kitchen staff and the move to cancel family visits in order to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
India, Delhi: state uses pretext of virus to send in cops to break up longest running sit-in against new racist citizenship law
Note: some left communists, who claim to critique unions, claimed that dockers in Brazil were to strike today and had struck on 20/3. In fact, neither strikes took place: the Union called off the assembly for today which would have discussed the possibility of a strike, which they’d threatened to do on 20/3. “The Union of the Dockers of Santos, São Vicente, Guarhttps://www.edinburghlive.co.uk/news/edinburgh-news/video-shows-coronavirus-prison-riot-17969746.amphttps://www.edinburghlive.co.uk/news/edinburgh-news/video-shows-coronavirus-prison-riot-17969746.ampujá and Cubatão decided to cancel the assembly that would be held on the morning of Monday, 23, about the possible stoppage of the activities of the professionals in the middle of the coronavirus outbreak. On Friday, 20, a meeting between the leaders of the port workers ended without agreement. Labor authorities linked to the Labor Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Regional Labor Prosecutor’s Office in the Municipality of Santos (SP) edited and published on Sunday, 22, a notification recommending to the Santos Workers Union not to hold the assembly that would deliberate on the category strike action . The recommendation was for the union to hold the meeting on the internet. The union president, Nei da Estiva, did not inform the reason for the cancellation and stated that the decision will not be made through the internet. According to him, workers carry out normal activities on Monday. Last week, the union drew up a document requesting a complete halt to operations at the Port of Santos, in the state of São Paulo, for the period instituted by the federal, state and municipal government quarantines. In the material, addressed to the national secretary of Ports of the Ministry of Transport, Luiz Otávio Campos, the entity asks for the suspension of activities.“
“The most immediate demands of workers on strike were to receive the right protection gear against Covid-19. But then many strikes went further than this, for example in the case of AvioAreo in Italy workers questioned whether their work – the production of aeroplane engines – is socially essential in these times. Workers at Ferrari did the same for obvious reasons.”
“they cannot leave us without food, that is why we are going to do justice. It is mandatory to go with the faces covered. The more we are, the better; society has to get ahead with or without government help. ”
“In thirty years of service, I have never seen such a thing …” The supervisors of the detention center of Uzerche, in Corrèze, are still in shock. … “Very rapidly, in the courtyard of the promenade, the gates and doors were broken, and the staff had to evacuate the premises. Then a fire broke out and the prisoners ended up on the roof. …The material damage is considerable. Two buildings were completely ransacked, and destroyed by flames. “The third and fourth floors of buildings C and D are 70% destroyed.”
“Sunday March 22, 2020 at around 4:30 p.m. during the second walk round of MA2, the detained people who were on their walk caused a mutiny by trying to break up the path of the walk.
Immediately the alert “MUTINY” was triggered and the Rennes ERIS was called to intervene in the incident, in support of the intervention teams made up of each CPH building.
When the alert was triggered, two teams, each equipped with a pump-action rifle, were set up around the MA2 promenade on the right courtyard (neutral zone) and in the walkway.
One of the teams was obliged to make a warning shot to dissuade the mutineers from any damage to the fence and the intervention door of the promenade.
When ERIS agents arrive at the establishment, once the detention center and related services had been secured, agents equipped with bomber suits were positioned in the hall of the MA2’s RCH to carry out reintegration of mutineers.
As the two MA2 promenades were blocked, the management decided to start with the left course (there were 22 detainees).
The detainees were brought back one by one to the cell by equipped CPH agents.
One of the leaders of the left court was placed in prevention at the QD.
Once the left court was reinstated, the ERIS had to reinstate the right court where there were 51 detainees. The MUTINEERS being much more virulent and refusing to be reinstated despite the warnings from the ERIS, the head of the ERIS made the decision to intervene on the promenade course to put an end to the mutiny.
The detainees were then put back in cells one by one and 2 detainees who were particularly active in the mutiny were placed in prevention at the QD.
Following the securing of the two jail buildings, all the agents (all bodies combined) present on the establishment proceeded to the distribution of meals in safety.
The Director, the following day, made arrangements for the start of walks following the weakening of the intervention door of the right-hand promenade yard MA2.
However, in view of the very tense climate prevailing in detention, we [ie the Force Ouvriere screws union] ask you to further reduce activities and therefore suppress all sports and lock down the entire detention center.”
“Twenty-three inmates were killed and 83 injured after a riot broke out in a prison in the Colombian capital Bogota over poor sanitary conditions amid the outbreak of the coronavirus, the justice minister revealed on Sunday. Riots swept across a number of prisons in Bogota, in some of which inmates started fires, activating the alarms for possible prisoner escapes.”
Turkey, Istanbul: post & telegraph workers strike after regional management of PTT allow permanent workers to stay home on Saturdays imposing overtime on almost 200 subcontracted workers
Google Translate: “As part of the epidemic measure of the PTT Istanbul Directorate, subcontractor workers at the 4th Regional Directorate of PTT, who were forced to work against the order not to work on Saturday, went on strike. It was stated that the management of the 4th Regional Directorate of PTT allowed the permanent workers and imposed overtime to nearly 200 subcontracted workers. The officials who came to the 4th Regional Directorate of PTT, after the workers who were forced to work, object to the situation and quit their jobs, said that a “planning error” was made. Managers stated that workers who do not want to work can go home. According to the information given by the authorities, only “sufficient number of staff” will work in a planned manner in the coming weeks. Subcontracted workers, who work within the body of PTT and say that they face thousands of people a day, demand paid leave for the coronavirus epidemic.”
Sri Lanka, Anuradhapura: filth kill 2 in prison riot over visits and food from outside being stopped
This is interesting because, officially, these workers are “self-employed”.
US: report on development of mutual aid groups…report on hunger strikes in migrant detention camps…California: MacDonalds on strike
Brazil, Consolacao: 37,000 workers at one of country’s main call centers stop work and block part of road due to fear of virus
“…on March 20, 2020, prisoners at the Aligudarz Central Prison, who were in danger of being exposed to the Coronavirus, rebelled and disarmed some of the prison officials, and tried to escape. Clashes between prisoners and guards spread out of prison, and IRGC units entered the scene to suppress the prisoners. The confrontation continued for several hours. Several prisoners managed to escape. Several were killed or injured when the repressive forces opened fire. Several guards were also wounded.”
“On Wednesday, residents stormed the Las Piñas city hall to grab food packs being distributed by the city government.”
“Complimentary reports of a riot and a number of prisoners fleeing the Parsilon Prison of Khorramabad in western Iran indicate this was a coordinated plan with people involved inside and outside the facility. Reports indicate masked individuals from the city of Kuhdasht, another city in Lorestan Province, western Iran, attacked the prison from the outside. Two or three prison guards were killed in this attack. Due to the attack from outside the prison and riots inside the facility, the prison guards were extremely terrified and lost control of the hectic situation. …prisoners at the Parsilon Prison in Khorramabad (western Iran), who were at risk of coronavirus infection, rebelled, disarmed the guards, and escaped. Prison guards and the repressive forces opened fire on about 250 fleeing inmates and killed several of them. A number of prisoners ignited fires and blocked the road to prevent the repressive forces from chasing them. The IRGC is searching for the inmates across the city of Khorramabad and in the surrounding areas and has set up checkpoints in many locations. …Regime officials have established martial law in Khorramabad and arrested several the locals following the riot in the Parsilon Prison and the successful escape of many inmates. The Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) have launched house-to-house searches in nearby villages in further attempts to apprehend the fleeing prisoners. The locals of Khorramabad have opened their homes to the fleeing prisoners, and many have helped them flee by driving them out of town.”
Turkey, Eskişehir: workers at textile factory ignore union advice and stop production for half an hour to protest fact no action being taken to protect them against virus
They wanted guarantees the premises would be cleaned. There was no disinfectant at the entrance and hygiene conditions in the canteen are poor. Unions in Turkey are just crude and blatant state &/or boss-organised collaborators. Google translate: “The workers, who touched many problems from their cleanness to their food, stopped production for half an hour this morning against inconvenience. Saying that the management announced that fever measurements will be made in the morning, but the controls have not been done yet, the workers said, “The services were disinfected last week, but the effect of the disinfectant was known. Toilets are in very bad condition. A disinfectant was put in its entrance, but it ends after 1 hour and does not come behind. Dishes are already bad in pattern, how logical are we eating on aluminum plates? Places are deleted but once a week. Moreover, the interior of the factory is not deleted. Does the factory consist of four corners? Everywhere is in the dust and naturally our hand is going to our face because it itches. The dispensers we filled with water are disgusting. They said it today, and attention would be paid. Do we have to say what they have to do before a person dies? ” He rebelled against the situation inside the factory. In the workplace where Öz İplik-İş Union was organized, the workers stated that the union was also silent in this process and said, “This factory has a union, does not have to weigh it and make it necessary? If a person gets infected in the factory, we will all be wasted. We all have a family, and unfortunately they will get infected with us. ” Another worker who said that their manager would allow those with chronic illnesses free of charge said, “Many people make a living. If he doesn’t work one day, he thinks about his diary. We, as workers, want at least temporary pay or curfew, so that we can be healthy. This is our most natural right. ” When the workers stopped work, the manager wanted to talk and said, “No need for stress, we will take better precautions for everything. We will pay attention to everything, you continue to work. ”“
France, Argentan: 14 prisoners climb onto roof for a few hours in resistance to enforced suppression of visitors, and of outside workers
“…several rebellious movements also took place in Nantes, Angers, Val-de-Reuil…”[in prisons]
US: report on wildcat strikes and shutdowns in car industry…Detroit: bus drivers win all demands after 24-hour strike: fares will not be collected for duration of coronavirus crisis
“The riders are going in and out the back doors…There is very little interacting with the drivers.”
“THUGS smashed the glass doors of a South London Sainsbury’s after raiding the store for alcohol amid the coronavirus crisis.”
France, Elbeuf near Rouen: youths chuck heavy-duty fireworks at cops during anti-confinement barbecue, as they also play “rodeo” (races and handbrake turns probably with stolen cars); no arrests…Chalon: 40 Amazon workers walk off the job because of lack of safety…Montelimar: Amazon workers walk off job for 2nd time , threatened with not being paid despite right to withdraw due to lack of health and safety …Waterloo: 20 workers on “wildcat strike” because of lack of health & safety conditions; site closed 3 days later…Marseille: attacks on company collaborating with state CCTV installations
Spain, Zaragoza: official action by 1000 workers at two electrical appliance factories; Trotskyist report in Spanish on other work-related resistance to the glories of sacrificing their lives for the economy
I suspect these strikes have been initiated by workers and the unions have sanctioned them because they obviously not only couldn’t not sanction them, but also genuinely supported them. After all, the dominant thinking, valid or not, is that millions could die. But it remains to be seen how much the potential bureaucratisation of these strikes will be able to hinder their development beyond this specific situation.
Revolt in the prison in Rhoumieh / Lebanon for fear of spreading the virus: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/03/riots-rock-overcrowded-lebanon-prisons-coronavirus-fears-200317164301234.html
Strike by construction workers in Linz due to lack of safety precautions: https://www.bonvalot.net/streik-in-linz-wegen-der-corona-rise-984
Strikes in several Amazon camps in France: https://twitter.com/WorkersAngry/status/1239881858726461441
Protests in China after resuming work: https://clb.org.hk/content/collective-protests-begin-flare-again-china-returns-work
“One, school teacher Mohamed Hachimi, said the demonstrations would not stop. “The system is trying to use coronavirus as an argument to end our revolution. Tebboune and his men will fail because marches will continue,” he said. Algeria has confirmed 60 cases of the coronavirus including five deaths, mostly in the town of Blida”
“Prisoners of at least four prison units in the state of São Paulo rebelled on Monday (3/16). All prisons are semi-open and do not have armed surveillance. The Penitentiary Administration Secretariat reports that 1,389 prisoners have fled and, until 3 pm this Tuesday (3/17), 573 have been recaptured. At the CPP (Penitentiary Progression Center) in Mongaguá, on the south coast of São Paulo, at least 8 people were taken hostage and released around 8:30 pm. “The problem is the psychological factor [prison officers taken hostage] that was very shaken,” said Marcio Santos Assunção, legal director of Sindasp (Union of São Paulo State Prison Agents). According to the government, the rebellions also affected three other units: the CPPs of Tremembé and Porto Feliz and the semi-open wing of the Penitentiary 2 of Mirandópolis….The prisoners revolted because of the suspension of temporary withdrawals in March to contain the proliferation of the coronavirus. ..Denunciations of poor conditions at the Federal Penitentiary of Brasília, where the PCC’s summit is located, caused prisoners to refuse to leave for hearings last week. In addition, within two days, two prison guards were killed…. more than ten prison units reported riot on Monday: Mirandópolis, Tremembé, Sumaré, Hortolândia, Oswaldo Cruz, São José dos Campos, Taubaté, Porto Feliz, Franco da Rocha, Irapuru, Campinas and Mongaguá. …Another unit that registered confusion was the semi-open wing of Penitentiary I of Mirandópolis, in the interior of the state. According to a note from SAP, “reeducates in the semi-open wing of Penitentiary I in Mirandópolis committed an act of insubordination, setting fire to their belongings.” The Rapid Intervention Group, made up of prison security officers, intervened. There, the capacity is for 516 prisoners, however, last Friday had 912 prisoners. At the Tremembé Penitentiary Progression Center, in the Paraíba Valley, “there was an act of insubordination”, according to SAP, without specifying which such act. As of last Friday, there were 3,006 detainees in the unit, but the capacity was 2,672. In the note sent, the João Doria management (PSDB) informed that “the units of semi-open regime, as determined by Brazilian legislation, do not have armed surveillance”
Remember: this was a week before the UK state decided to try to take matters into its own hands
Virtually no information other than the headline
France, Moselle: about 100 prisoners refuse to return to their cells following prediction of visitor suspension (not yet enforced, though enforced from 17th March onwards)), and already-enforced suspension of outsiders, such as teachers, giving lessons in prison
“With the coronavirus, they want us to be quarantined in our homes, but some of us don’t have homes,” she said. In speaking to supporters, the protesters, who call themselves Reclaiming Our Homes, said they understood what they were doing is illegal, but the more significant issue was that homes were left vacant while people in the community were homeless. “They say it’s a crime to come and occupy these houses,” Benito Flores said. “But this is not a crime. This is justice.”
Canada, Ontario: walk out by workers at Chrysler factory; union and management get them to return to risk next day
“We can’t believe the union. We are so mad at them. If they aren’t going to fight for us, then we don’t need them. What’s the point?”
“The latest actions follow the firings of 54 Santa Cruz graduate students by UC president, and former Homeland Security secretary under Obama, Janet Napolitano. An additional 20 Santa Cruz students have been told that there would be no positions available for them at the start of the 2020–2021 academic year. Support for the strikers has spread across the US and internationally. Sympathy rallies were held in the past few days at the University of Maryland, University of Nevada-Reno and many other campuses.”
Finland, Helsinki: union-sanctioned action by bus drivers, who will not open front doors; passengers will get on free of charge
France, Nancy: 4th day of official wage strike by dustmen ; they may be forced to work, bosses using pretext of virus
Italy: loads of wildcat strikes… arrest of 8 striking workers from EmilianaSerbatoi…Treviso: workers of ElectroLux in Susegana go on an 8-hour strike, demanding the closure of all unnecessary activities and continued payment of wages
“Luxury dresses are not essential goods, the factory should close!”
Italy: Wildcat strikes at Fiat
“The FCA Group has now announced in a written notice that all production sites in Italy (Pomigliano d’Arco, Melfi, Cassina, Atessa) will be temporarily closed and subjected to special cleaning and disinfection measures become. It is a first success, but it was only enforced thanks to the assertiveness of the workers and is limited exclusively to the Fiat factories. ”
Italy: Wildcat strike in logistics in Piacenza
“ We remain in place until the company has found a solution. We risk our lives to get to work. But our health comes first! ”Says the logistics workers from Bartolini di Caorso in the province of Piacenza (video). They stopped deliveries because of the lack of necessary safety measures in the face of the corona virus emergency: the warehouses were not cleaned and disinfected, and respirators and gloves were not provided. ”
“The protests are not limited to this company, the workers of the Fiat factory also downed tools in Pomigliano d’Arco near Napoli.”