10 November 2005 Edition

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World news in brief

French riots spread

For two weeks, members of African and Arab communities in cities across France have been rioting, with several buildings and thousands of cars burned as well as over 500 youths detained. Unrest began on 27 October after the deaths of two youths in the rundown Paris suburb of Clichy-sous-Bois. The two men were electrocuted at an electricity sub-station after fleeing police. Rampant unemployment, heavy-handed policing, discrimination and poor housing are some of the characteristics of the housing states were the rioting begun. Many in the areas affected feel the state ignores them at best and at worst stands in the way of their attempts to improve their situation.

International day against the Wall

Worldwide activities take place between 9 and 16 November in solidarity with those in Palestine suffering because of the construction of the 'Apartheid Wall'.

In recent years in some 30 countries and grassroots organisations have protested against the wall and Israeli occupation. Under the slogan Through our Hands, the Apartheid Wall will Fall, the Palestinian communities along the wall's path are preparing intensified mass mobilisation against further Israeli colonisation, land grabs and expulsion.

The Irish Palestine Solidarity Committee is organising a protest against this on Friday 11 November at 5pm at The Spire in Dublin's O'Connell Street.

Batasuna leader sentenced

In the wake of torture complaints during the operation to close down the Basque daily Egunkaria in February 2003, Batasuna leader Arnaldo Otegi asked: "How is it possible that the Lehendakari President of the BAC — Basque Autonomous Community should appear in a photo alongside the King of Spain, who as king is the Commander-in-Chief of the Spanish Armed Forces, in other words, the head of the torturers, the one who supports torture, and whose monarchical system is forced on our country through torture and violence?" Now, the Supreme Court has ruled that these words "gravely insulted"‚ the Spanish King and has handed down a year's custodial sentence and disqualification from public office for the same period on Arnaldo Otegi.

Hamas regards attack as declaration of war

In a missile strike on the Jabalia Refugee Camp (Gaza) the Israeli Army killed a Hamas leader and one of his colleagues. Hamas regard the attack as a declaration of war and promised revenge. The Islamic Jihad and the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade have followed suit. According to witnesses the car carrying Hassan al Madhoun, the leader of the Hamas Islamic Resistance Movement, and his colleague Fawzi al Qudra was struck by Israeli Army missiles. Israel justified the attack, accusing Madhoun of organising attacks in the city of Ashdod, and at the Karni border crossing between Gaza and Israel.

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