[BAI Note]The clashes in “Turkestan” have been going on for decades as the Muslim Uyghur population has been in a decolonial struggle against the Chinese state and the Han Chinese. The Hans have been flooding and settling the region which is often called “Xinjiang,” which means “New Frontier” or “New Colony,” by the Chinese state and global mainstream media. The security forces in the region are Han Chinese as well and any act against the settlers is considered an act against the state. Since 9/11, the Chinese government has taken to calling the Uyghur rebels “insurgents” and the uprisings acts of “terror.” The Muslim Uyghur community, now an ethnic minority group in the region, has also been banned by the Chinese state from observing Ramadan. Other Muslim activities such as visits to the masjid (mosques) have also been curbed. Continue reading →
From the AFP. An Indonesian student launches fireworks towards police during a protest against the fuel price hike outside parliament in Jakarta on June 17, 2013.
Police fired tear gas and rubber bullets at stone-throwing protesters in Indonesia yesterday, as thousands demonstrated nationwide against the government’s plan to increase fuel prices.
Several people were injured in the clashes which came as lawmakers at parliament in the capital Jakarta were set to approve budget amendments that will pave the way for the first fuel hike since 2008.
Five protesters, a journalist and seven policeman were injured during clashes in the city of Ternate, in the eastern Maluku islands, said national police spokesman Agus Rianto.
A 2,000-strong crowd hurled sticks and rocks at police, who responded by firing rubber bullets at the demonstrators, he added. A reporter at the scene said police also fired tear gas.
In Jambi, a city on Sumatra island, hundreds of protesters tried to push through the gate in front of the local legislature, provincial police spokesman Almansyah said “The situation became somewhat chaotic and the police had to fire tear gas to disperse them,” said the spokesman, who like many Indonesians goes by one name. Continue reading →
Calling on all cities of the world! Come out this weekend and reclaim your public spaces to show solidarity with #OccupyGezi and the many waves of protests in Turkey!
What began as a small occupation to protect Istanbul’s Gezi Park erupted within a matter of days into massive protests that spread like wildfire across Turkey. A key trigger was the disproportionate use of force by the police. Just as Gezi Park crystallized the struggle over an ever-shrinking public space hijacked by neoliberal authoritarianism, the pepper gas that security forces doused on Istanbul literalized the general need for breathing space – hundreds of thousands of people walked out onto the streets in support of the Gezi Park occupation despite a total media blackout, defying police brutality. Now we have reclaimed not only Gezi Park but also Taksim Square, the very heart of Turkey’s public sphere, where mass expressions of discontent have repeatedly been banned, throughout the republic’s history. As Taksim and Gezi swell every night with thousands of people who come to celebrate their solidarity, victory and power, our resistance in other parts of Istanbul and other cities across Turkey continues. Of one thing we are certain: Nothing will ever be the same again. Continue reading →