Communist Party of Australia

We acknowledge the Sovereignty of the First Nations’ Peoples.

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Issue #1614      October 16, 2013

CPA 12th National Congress Resolutions

Cuban Five

The 12th Congress of the Communist Party of Australia held on October 4-7, 2013 joins the millions of voices around the world in the struggle for the freedom of the Cuban Five. Congress delegates express their solidarity with the Five Cuban men on the 15th anniversary of their unjust incarceration for fighting against terrorism aimed at the people of Cuba.

The Cuban Five are political prisoners who were kept in solitary confinement for 17 months and denied family visitation rights. They had been sentenced to long sentences from 15 years to double life imprisonment plus 15 years, in the case of Gerardo Hernandez.

We note the decision by US Courts ordering the State Department to hand in crucial information about payments made to journalists by the US government to damage the image of the Cuban Five and influence public opinion before and during their trial in Miami.

We join the international demand that President Obama use his powers and free them immediately.

Congress delegates also call on President Obama to grant Adriana Perez a visa to visit her husband Gerardo Hernandez who has been unable to see him for 15 years. The Cuban Five must be able to exercise visitation rights.

Congress delegates pledge to continue their campaign for their freedom and return to Cuba where their families await them.

Peace Process in Colombia

The 12th Congress of the Communist Party of Australia held on October 4-7, 2013 expresses its solidarity with the people of Colombia.

Congress delegates are aware of the struggle of the Colombian people for self-determination and their second independence.

The Colombian ruling class closed all the political spaces for the free participation of the people forcing them to adopt all forms of struggle including the armed struggle.

For more than 50 years the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, Peoples Army (FARC-EP) have fought against imperialism and for self determination.

The end of the armed conflict is an immediate demand for the people of Colombia forcing the Colombian government to the peace talks with the FARC-EP in Havana, Cuba.

The FARC-EP on behalf of the Colombian people seeks to find a political solution to the conflict by political means. This is to find a solution to the causes of the war to achieve peace with social justice.

The FARC-EP has shown political will by expressing their decision to work in the interests of the people of Colombia to open political spaces allowing left and progressive forces to freely organise and exercise their right to govern.

The FARC-EP called for a unilateral cease-fire and invited the Colombian government to follow suit for a bilateral cease-fire creating better conditions for peace talks. The Colombian government has not shown political will, continuing the war against the people, aiming at a military “solution”.

The armed conflict determines all government policies and actions for a quick military “solution” to the conflict working against the will of the people.

The armed conflict has also resulted in more than 10,000 political prisoners taken into custody in inhumane conditions on trumped up charges and sentenced to long prison terms.

Congress delegates call on the government of President Santos to release all political prisoners and to agree to a bilateral ceasefire.

Congress delegates gathered at this Congress send warm greetings of solidarity to the FARC-EP who struggle for peace in the mountains of Colombia and to the Peace Delegation in Havana, Cuba, wishing them every success in their efforts for peace with social justice.

In Solidarity with the Syrian people

The independent nation of Syria has been the target of an armed intervention by the imperialist powers since March 2011.

This intervention, initiated by the United States with the active connivance of its key NATO allies, United Kingdom and France, as well as Saudi Arabia and Turkey, with Israel playing a key behind the scenes role, has tried to take advantage of the confusion created by the widespread revolt throughout the Middle East and North Africa, known as the Arab Spring and has been long planned.

Its aim is to take out a key member of the resistance to imperialist domination in the Middle East and Central Asia, enabling further gains to be made by US imperialism, with Iran as the next key target and with the risk of an unstoppable drift to generalised, open war.

Closely related to this objective is to take out a secular, progressive regime that may inspire further revolt against the reactionary regimes in the region propped up by imperialism.

Syria has been a consistent supporter of the Palestinian cause; it has provided refuge for millions of Iraqis and others who have been displaced by other imperialist inspired wars in the Middle East. It has well-established public health, education, childcare and housing programs, as well as nationalised key sectors of its economy. It is a society that has practised religious tolerance and supported women’s equality. It is largely a modern society.

Above all, a process of democratic reform was already underway when the proxy Islamist forces, paid and armed by US and NATO and the rich Gulf states, were unleashed on the Syrian people.

There is no popular revolt in Syria; there is no sectarian civil war. If either of these factors was playing out on the ground of the Baathist regime, which reports itself as a socialist regime under international pressure to carry out neo-liberal economic reform, it would have collapsed a long time ago.

The people, workers and their parties throughout the world have a duty to defend the Syrian people from the predatory practices of imperialism – Syria’s future should be for the Syrian people to decide.

On October 13 there are rallies, demonstrations and other events throughout the world calling for “Hands off Syria!”

We call on the Prime Minister of Australia Tony Abbott and the Foreign Minister Julie Bishop to support this and other actions in solidarity with the Syrian people and against the fomenting of open or clandestine war in the Middle East.

Great Lockout of 1913 (Ireland)

That the 12th National Congress of the CPA commemorates and celebrates along with the Irish working class the occasion of the centenary of the great lockout of 1913.

The struggle around the great lockout gave the working class of Ireland the means and strength to join and win unity to belong to the Transport and General Workers’ Union and to form the Irish Citizen Army to protect the working class against police attacks and the murderous activity of scabs.

It gave the Irish working class the ideological strength to participate as equals in the struggle for a socialist republic alongside the Irish Republican comrades in 1916.

We also remember the great leaders of the Irish working class: Jim Larkin, James Connolly, Sean O’Casey, Countess Markievicz and Delia Larkin.

Next article – Urgent appeal for political prisoners in Israeli jails

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