-Top News UK News

Truck drivers in go-slow protest

Rail workers have already staged a series of stoppages to press for better pay as Britain’s headline inflation reaches a 40-year high of just under 10 percent, driven in part by the war in Ukraine…reports Asian Lite News

Protesters snarled up major UK roads on Monday with a slow-moving procession of vehicles to demand government action against rocketing fuel prices.

The action came as senior criminal lawyers staged a second walkout in England and Wales against years of government cuts to their fees, intensifying a “summer of discontent” as strikes sweep Britain.

Rail workers have already staged a series of stoppages to press for better pay as Britain’s headline inflation reaches a 40-year high of just under 10 percent, driven in part by the war in Ukraine.

On the roads, a social media campaign called Fuel Price Stand Against Tax mobilised drivers to drive deliberately slowly on motorways and other arterial routes, demanding the government slash fuel duty.

One of the motorways affected was the M4 including the Prince of Wales Bridge, which links England and Wales. Welsh police said they had arrested 12 people for driving under 30 miles (48 kilometres) per hour for “a prolonged amount of time”.

Vicky Stamper lost her job as a truck driver last month after the company was forced to cut costs in the face of the surging fuel costs.“I’m here because I’ve lost my job because of the fuel, and the greedy people at the top taking all of our money,” she said just over the border in England.

Addressing any members of the public inconvenienced by the action, Stamper said “we’re doing this for everyone”. “If they want to have a whinge, instead of whinging, join us.”

The government insists it has already cut fuel duty once, and is offering other financial support for the public, while blaming Russia for igniting the rapid rise in energy prices. “People’s day-to-day lives should not be disrupted,” a spokesperson said.

The government also says it is addressing the demands of the criminal barristers by offering a 15pc rise in fees from the end of September.

But the increase will only apply to new cases, not to tens of thousands piling up in a backlog as British courts wrestle with the fallout of the Covid pandemic.

Outside the Royal Courts of Justice in central London, barristers in black gowns and wigs insisted the government significantly raise its offer as they walked out for a second week and vowed more strikes ahead.

Protesting barrister Emma Heath, 34, said defence lawyers could spend eight hours in preparation for a client receiving legal aid and get paid only 126 ($153) by the government.

“We fully appreciate the impact it’s having, but until the government wake up and see what’s actually happening to criminal legal aid funding, we’re left with no choice,” she said.

Justice Secretary Dominic Raab — a former lawyer — has called the strike action “regrettable” and said it would “only delay justice for victims”.

Tariq Akram said his was one of 50 vehicles making the 60-mile journey through Scunthorpe and Doncaster at 20mph.

The Scunthorpe truck driver told the BBC his company had added £4,000 to its fuel bill in the past four months because of rising prices.

“The turnout was absolutely fantastic. There were 35 vehicles from our yard alone who took part,” he said.

“At one point, I thought some cars wanted to overtake so I tried to let them by, then I realised they were joining in.”

Avon and Somerset Police said all protests in its area had finished and thanked the public for their patience in a tweet at 15:20 BST.

Earlier, Devon and Cornwall Police said it was aware of a go-slow protest heading northbound from Exeter services on the M5.

The force also said a further protest began on the A38 heading north from Ivybridge, where a man in his 50s was arrested after ignoring a warning about unsafe driving.

“Unfortunately we have had unsafe driving on the A38 including vehicles travelling at a dangerously low speed,” a force spokesman said.

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-Top News USA

Massive protests in US as abortion right ends

Twin demonstrations were also getting under way in Los Angeles — one headed to city hall and the other to the federal courthouse — with dozens of smaller rallies planned from coast to coast…reports Asian Lite News

Abortion rights defenders fanned out across America Saturday for a second day of protest against the Supreme Court’s thunderbolt ruling, as state after conservative state moved swiftly to ban the procedure.

The deeply polarized country woke up to a new level of division: between states that will now or soon deny the right to abortion, enshrined since 1973, and those that still allow it.

After protests went late into the night, several hundreds of people thronged the streets outside the fenced-off Supreme Court again Saturday, in hot summer weather, carrying signs that read “War on women, who’s next?” and “No uterus, No opinion.”

“What happened yesterday is indescribable and disgusting,” said Mia Stagner, 19, a political science major in college. “Being forced to be a mother is not something any woman should have to do.”

Twin demonstrations were also getting under way in Los Angeles — one headed to city hall and the other to the federal courthouse — with dozens of smaller rallies planned from coast to coast.

At least eight right-leaning states imposed immediate bans on abortion — with a similar number to follow suit in coming weeks — after the Supreme Court eliminated 50-year-old constitutional protections for the procedure, drawing criticism from some of America’s closest allies around the world.

Fueling the mobilization, many now fear that the Supreme Court, with a clear conservative majority made possible by Donald Trump, might next set its sights on rights like same-sex marriage and contraception.

President Joe Biden — who has likewise voiced concerns the court might not stop at abortion — spoke out again Saturday against its “shocking decision.”

“I know how painful and devastating the decision is for so many Americans,” said the president, who has urged Congress to restore abortion protections as federal law, and vowed the issue would be on the ballot in November’s midterm elections.

Women in states that severely restrict abortion or outlaw it altogether will either have to continue with their pregnancy, undergo a clandestine abortion, obtain abortion pills, or travel to another state where it remains legal.

“We are going to see some nightmare scenarios, sadly,” Biden’s spokeswoman Karine Jean Pierre told reporters on Air Force One, as the president headed to Europe for Group of Seven and NATO summits.

“That is not hypothetical,” she said.

‘Women died getting abortions’

Friday’s demonstrations mostly passed off without incident — although police fired tear gas on protesters in Phoenix, Arizona and in the Iowa city of Cedar Rapids a pickup truck drove through a group of protesters, running over a woman’s foot.

In Washington on Saturday the scene was once again mostly peaceful — barring the odd shouting match between abortion rights advocates and opponents.

Carolyn Keller, 57, who traveled all the way from New Jersey, said she was enraged by the ruling, warning: “They came after women. They will come after the LGBT community and contraception.”

But counter-protesters like Savannah Craven stood firm.

“It’s not a personal choice to have an abortion, it involves two people and unfortunately that choice ends in the ending of someone’s life,” she told AFP.

As protesters like Craven made clear, while Friday’s ruling represents a victory in the religious right’s struggle against abortion, the movement’s ultimate goal is a nationwide ban.

That goal is now within sight in about two dozen states which are now expected to severely restrict or outright ban and criminalize abortions.

Missouri was first to ban the procedure on Friday, making no exception for rape or incest, joined as of Saturday morning by at least seven other states — Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Utah.

In its ruling, the Supreme Court tossed out the argument in Roe v. Wade that women had the right to abortion based on the constitutional right to privacy with regard to their own bodies.

Women in those states will either have to continue with their pregnancy, undergo a clandestine abortion, obtain abortion pills, or travel to another state where it remains legal.

Several Democratic-ruled states, anticipating an influx of patients, have already taken steps to facilitate abortion and three of them — California, Oregon and Washington — issued a joint pledge to defend access in the wake of the court’s decision.

ALSO READ-US will narrowly avoid recession: IMF chief

Arab News


Palestinian people protest against the flag march in Jabalia, northern Gaza Strip.

Tens of thousands of Palestinians have joined public protests organized in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip against the flag march on Sunday. The controversial flag march through Jerusalem’s Old City took place on Sunday to mark Jerusalem Day, which commemorates the unification of the city after Israel annexed East Jerusalem in 1967.

(Photo by Rizek Abdeljawad/Xinhua)

ALSO READ: Palestine Raps Bennett

India News News PAKISTAN

PoJK inches towards social rebellion

It was a cold night with subzero temperature on March 2 when a police convoy arrived outside the office of Rawalakot Commissioner in Pakistan occupied Jammu Kashmir (PoJK). More than two dozen political activists and members of Jammu Kashmir National Students Federation (JKNSF) had been observing a protest sit-in outside the gates of the Rawalakot Commission office building…writes Amjad Ayub Mirza

Hoping that the administration had come to begin negotiations the protesters took a sigh of relief. Little did they know that they were in for a shock. No sooner had the police arrived at the protest camp that they began lathi charge and started to arrest the protesters.

Liaquat Hayat, leader of Jammu Kashmir National Awami Party (JKNAP) a left wing political organisation of Stalinist tendency and Samad Shakeel leader of JKNAP’s student wing of JKNSF were the first to get handcuffed and thrown into the police vehicles. In total six protesters are said to have been apprehended at the spot.

Earlier on the same day, a long march from Muzaffarabad to Islamabad by adhoc employees was postponed after Prime minister Abdul Qayyum Niazi invited their leadership for negotiations. Similarly, a protest scheduled for March 3 by thousands of pensioners, most of whom are ex-army servicemen, and who were to gather in the capital city of Muzaffarabad was cancelled due to severe rain and bad weather conditions.

Hardly a day passes by without a protest in PoJK against pressing social and economic issues. The situation in Pakistani occupied Gilgit Baltistan (PoGB) is no different. Since Pakistan Prime minister Imran Khan announced that PoGB will be incorporated as Pakistan’s 5th provisional province on March 23 this year public unrest has become the norm.

It has been 4 days since the PoGB Awami Action Committee has conducted a sit-in in Kharmang blocking the vital Karakoram Highway since March 1. Protests against cuts in subsidies and lack of clean drinking water plus extreme load shedding has been the cause for spontaneous public unrest in all major cities and towns of PoGB.

On March 3 several protests were held simultaneously in Titrinote, Dadyal, Rawalakot and Kotli city against the March 2 arrests of protesters in Rawalakot and a press conference was held in Muzaffarabad to warn the state to be ready to face grave consequences if political prisoners were not released within 24 hours.

In the present day, public opinion in both occupied territories of PoJK and PoGB is decisively against Pakistan. Yet, lack of a comprehensive political programme and a visionary leadership has become a main obstacle in transforming the ongoing economic strife and the political discontent into a meaningful and collective social and political movement that could lead to social transformation and bring about fundamental political change in obtaining freedom from the clutches for Pakistani occupation.

The majority of the youth in PoJK and PoGB are of secular mind and do not support Pakistan’s interference in the Valley of Kashmir. They despise radical jihad and Pakistan’s proxy Jihadi organisations. However, lack of able political leadership is hampering their strive for emancipation.

There are three points that I would like to make and suggest a possible solution to the ongoing deadlock created due to the current dispersed form that the protests have manifested.

ALSO READ: Protest in London Over Rights Abuses at Gilgit Baltistan & POJK

Firstly, the adhoc employees, non-gazette employees, pensioners and civil society organisations, which are protesting against redundancies, delays in promotions, low pensions, load shedding and lack of clean drinking water, should form a united front and a collective charter of demands. This will bring all scattered social movements together and strengthen their crusade.

Secondly, a political programme, based on historical facts such as the instrument of accession to the Indian Republic, signed by Maharaja Hari Singh and Lord Mountbatten on October 26, 1947, and international obligations based on the United Nations Resolutions that Pakistan must withdraw its troops from PoJK and PoGB, should be formulated and linked to the social and economic struggles currently going on in PoJK and PoGB.

Finally, a consensus among all social, economic and political groups regarding direction of the way forward, should be established and followed through. This direction can only be quitting Pakistan and reunifying with Jammu and with Ladakh which in practical terms means joining the Union of the Indian Republic.

There is no doubt in my mind that the people of PoJK and PoGB are in a fighting mood. Nevertheless, this fighting mood could end up in frustration and defeat if it fails to rise to the event and produce visionary leadership.

Africa News Arab News News

Protest demanding civilian rule resumed in Sudan

Protests demanding civilian rule and the release of political detainees have resumed in Sudan, which coincided with a visit of a UN human rights expert to the country…reports Asian Lite News

On Monday night, thousands of protesters gathered at the busiest bus station Sharwani in capital Khartoum before marching toward the Republican Palace, while thousands of others gathered at Bahri and Omdurman cities, raising photos of martyrs and detainees, Xinhua news agency quoted witnesses as saying.

Adama Dieng, UN expert on human rights in Sudan, is on a visit to the country until Thursday.

The trip was initially planned for last month, but was postponed to Sunday at the request of the Sudanese authorities.

On Sunday, the former ruling Forces of Freedom and Change Alliance called in a statement for a national campaign to release all political detainees estimated at over 200.

Earlier on Monday, the Sudanese authorities released 36 detainees from a prison south of the capital, the Sudanese Lawyers Committee said on its Facebook page, adding those released are political prisoners in connection with the recent protests.

ALSO READ: Sudan releases 36 detained protesters

The committee noted that the move “aims to mislead the visiting UN human rights expert”.

Sudan has been suffering a political crisis after the General Commander of the Sudanese Army Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan declared a coup on October 25, 2021 and dissolved the Sovereign Council and the government.

Since then, Khartoum and other cities have been rocked by regular mass protests stage by opposition group, during which dozens of protesters have also been killed in clashes with security forces.

Education India News

Jharkhand Navodaya students lock themselves in protest against poor food

After interacting with the students, the Deputy Commissioner said that necessary steps would be taken to resolve their problems and action would be taken against those who were responsible…reports Asian Lite News

Students of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Jharkhand’s Simdega on Wednesday locked themselves up in a hall for hours in protest against poor food quality and other problems in the school.

A total of 176 students shut themselves in a hall of the school saying they would not come out until the Deputy Commissioner listens to them and take steps to resolve their problems. After about six hours, the students withdrew their agitation only when Deputy Commissioner Sushant Gaurav reached the school and assured of taking action.

On Wednesday morning after breakfast, all the students of class 9 to 12 gathered in a hall and accused the school management of giving them poor quality food. They said, there are several other problems, but despite repeated complaints, no one has listened to them.

After they shut themselves in a hall, the school management tried to persuade the children but they remained adamant on their demand to call the Deputy Commissioner. It was only after about six hours when the Deputy Commissioner arrived and convinced the children that their problems will be heard, the students opened the door.

The children complained that the food provided to them in the mess was of very poor quality. There are several other problems related to their education and hostel, but they said the school management does not pay any heed to them.

After interacting with the students, the Deputy Commissioner said that necessary steps would be taken to resolve their problems and action would be taken against those who were responsible.

Later the Deputy Commissioner said that the students may have some problems, but the manner in which they were instigated is highly objectionable. Those who misled the students will be identified and action will be taken against them. He said that the entire issue would be discussed with the students as well as their parents and all the stakeholders.

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Arab News News World

Dozens of Palestinian protesters injured in West Bank

Dozens of Palestinian protesters were injured during clashes with Israeli soldiers near three West Bank cities…reports Asian Lite News

Witnesses told Xinhua news agency that fierce clashes broke out on Friday between Palestinian demonstrators and Israeli soldiers in villages south and east of the northern West Bank city of Nablus.

Ahmad Jibril, emergency director in the Palestinian Red Crescent Society, told reporters that Israeli soldiers shot and wounded 13 demonstrators with rubber-coated metal bullets during the clashes.

ALSO READ: Palestine and Algeria to resume reconciliation dialogue

Clashes also broke out in the southern West Bank city of Hebron and the northern West Bank city of Qalqilya, said medics and ewitnesses, adding that Israeli soldiers fired teargas and rubber bullets to disperse the demonstrators.

There has been no immediate comment of the Israeli army on the clashes that broke out during protests and demonstrations against the confiscation of Palestinian lands and expansion of settlements in the West Bank.

India News

Protest in parties over candidate selection

Similarly, in Shamli, Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) workers were upset over the announcement of BJP turncoat Prasann Chaudhary as its candidate…reports Asian Lite News

The announcement of candidates by the various political parties for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections is leading to protests by respective party workers.

Soon after the declaration of the BJP candidates on Saturday, protests erupted in Nauganva Sadat seat in Amroha, where sitting MLA Sangeeta Chauhan, wife of late UP cabinet minister Chetan Chauhan, was replaced by Devender Nagpal.

Effigies were burnt and slogans were raised against Nagpal and the BJP in general.

A Samajwadi Party worker was detained on Sunday evening after he allegedly tried to self-immolate himself outside the party office in Lucknow, claiming that he had been denied a ticket to contest the Assembly polls.

“I have spent my entire youth working for the party. I have worked for the party in Aligarh for the last 5 years. I want justice,” said Thakur Aditya, the SP worker.

Similarly, in Shamli, Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) workers were upset over the announcement of BJP turncoat Prasann Chaudhary as its candidate.

In a recently-held panchayat, senior RLD leader Arvind Pawar said, “Prasann Chaudhary is the same person who distributed sweets when RLD supremo Ajit Singh was defeated in Muzaffarnagar in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. At the same time those workers who had been with the RLD in difficult times have been side-lined. We do not support this move.”

Sunil Rohta, RLD spokesperson, explained, “Politics is about compulsions and adjustments. In the prevailing circumstances, senior leaders have taken a decision which is in the interest of the party. We will explain this situation to those dejected. They will come around.”

Similarly, effigies were burnt across Muzaffarnagar and Baghpat a night before the BJP was to release its first list of 107 candidates. The protests were against former MLC Prashant Gurjar, who has been named a candidate.

The BJP workers too burnt effigies of Yogesh Dhama in Baghpat.

Both candidates are there on the list of 107 candidates released by the BJP on Saturday.

“Ours is a disciplined party with a disciplined cadre. This is the opposition’s gameplan to give an impression that BJP workers are not happy. Our investigation has revealed that in some places like Baghpat, it was RLD workers who burned effigies of Yogesh Dhama. Other regions too have the similar situation,” said UP west vice president of BJP Manoj Poswal.

The Congress has been facing protests in Meerut, Lakhimpur and several other constituencies, including Sarojini Nagar in Lucknow over ticket distribution.

ALSO READ-Punjab poll dates shifted by EC

Africa News News World

High ranking Sudan police killed in fresh protests

A high-ranking Sudanese police officer was killed during fresh protests in capital Khartoum demanding a civilian rule in the country…rpeorts Asian Lite News

“Acting Interior Minister and the Police’s Director General eulogise the death of Brigadier General Ali Barima Hammad, who died while performing his duty to protect the demonstrators near Stack Medical Laboratory,” the press office of the Sudanese police said in a statement.

The police did not reveal the circumstances which led to the death of the senior police officer, but the new casualty might mark an escalation of confrontations between protesters and security forces.

Sudanese protesters took to the streets again on Thursday in the capital Khartoum and other cities in new and increasingly regular demonstrations to demand civilian rule.

Protesters gathered in central Khartoum and tried to reach the presidential palace, witnesses told Xinhua.

Crowds of demonstrators in Omdurman also headed towards Al-Arbaeen Street, a vital street leading to a bridge linking Omdurman and Khartoum, they added.

ALSO READ: One killed, 30 injured in Sudan’s street protests
Khartoum State’s Police issued a statement earlier on Thursday announcing partial closure to some bridges linking the major cities of Khartoum, Omdurman, and Bahri.

Military units have been deployed at the entrances of most of the bridges and on the internal roads to the presidential palace and the army’s general command headquarters.

Sudan has been suffering a political crisis after the general commander of the Sudanese Armed Forces Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan declared a coup on October 25, 2021 and dissolved the Sovereign Council and the government.

Africa News News World

One killed, 30 injured in Sudan’s street protests

One protestor was killed and 30 others injured during mass demonstrations in Khartoum and other major cities demanding a return to civilian rule in the country…reports Asian Lite News

Sudanese police have confirmed that one protester was killed and 30 others were injured during mass demonstrations in Khartoum and other major cities demanding a return to civilian rule in the country.

A total of 22 policemen were injured during the demonstrations on Sunday and the police used “minimum legal force” in dealing with the protesters, reports Xinhua news agency.

During the demonstrations, 86 protesters were arrested and legal procedures have been taken against them, the police said on Monday.

However, the Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors (CCSD), a non-governmental organisation, claimed that two protesters were killed and 68 others injured.

Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets on Sunday to demand civilian rule despite efforts by parties concerned to bring a political solution to the crisis in the North African country

ALSO READ: Fresh protests demanding civilian rule erupt in Sudan

On January 8, the UN launched an intra-Sudanese political process to end the crisis.

Volker Perthes, the UN envoy for Sudan, said in a statement that the political process would seek a “sustainable path forward towards democracy and peace” in the country.

It was not immediately clear when the discussions might begin.

Sudan has been suffering a political crisis with regular mass protests after the general commander of the Sudanese Armed Forces Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan declared a coup on October 25, 2021 and dissolved the Sovereign Council and the government.