OCEAN BEACH, CA. The San Diego Union-Tribune continues its censorship and blackout of news about the global protests against the high costs of fuel. Okay, there was some news, particularly about what’s going on in South Korea. But by and large, the explosive news from Spain, Thailand, France, the Philippines, Portugal is being censored. Because of this local corporate media censorship, we need to do the informing. Here then is the news:
NEW UPDATE:Fuel protests to bring road chaos as thousands of buses, taxis, and trucks will converge on central Israel June 19th
Ran Rimon and Dubi Ben Gedalyahu / 18 Jun 08
Thousands of bus, taxi, and truck drivers will make their way to central Israel Thursday in the opening round of the battle to abolish the duty on diesel, the Israel Road Transport Board has said.
Vehicles from all over Israel will form a convoy of trucks, buses and taxis on the Haifa-Tel Aviv highways. At the same time, hundreds of taxis are also set to begin their descent from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv, and another large convoy will make its way from Tel Aviv southward. [For the rest, go here.]
Finnish Truckers Plan Go-Slow Protest over High Fuel Costs
By Agence France-Presse
June 17, 2008 — On the eve of a major holiday when heavy traffic is expected, Finnish truck drivers plan a go-slow protest in the Helsinki region on June 19 to protest against rising fuel costs, a transport association said. Information about the protest has spread in a text message from one driver to another and has not been centrally organized, the Finnish transport and logistics agency SKAL said June 17.
Police and transport associations have urged truckers to cancel their plans, citing image and safety reasons. “This is about the image of the transport industry in the eyes of the general public. The industry would not gain anything,” SKAL managing director Iiro Lehtonen said. “On the other hand it is about safety. It could lead to dangerous overtaking,” he added. Heavy traffic is expected at the time of the planned protest as many Finns will be travelling to the countryside to celebrate Friday’s mid-summer holiday. [For the rest, go here.]
South Korea braces for more strikes
SEOUL, June 17 – A South Korean labour group on Tuesday announced a one-day strike for next month in protest against the economic reform plans of Lee Myung-bak, the president, adding pressure on the embattled leader facing calls for his resignation.
The move by the more than 600,000-strong, militant Korean Confederation of Trade Unions, which represents auto, healthcare and financial service workers, comes as Mr Lee is trying to resolve a truckers’ strike over soaring fuel costs that has paralysed the export-dependent country’s ports. [For the rest, go here.]
French Truckers Block Roads
June 16th – French truckers began blocking roads in the latest protest to pressure the government to help them cope with oil prices that have more than doubled in a year. The nationwide day of action announced by the main haulage associations included roadblocks and so-called “snail” operations by convoys of slow-moving trucks and is expected to disrupt traffic severely, especially on highways.
“It’s not about punishing transport users, it’s about sending a warning to the government,” said Philippe Fournier, an official of Unostra, an association that mainly represents small haulage firms.
Private ambulances clogged streets near the Health Ministry in the capital and outside Paris, and news agencies reported trucks blocking highways leading to the country’s principal ports. In addition, on June 17, a national job action has been called to protest against the government’s plans to reform pensions and weaken the 35-hour working week. [For more go ici.]
Belgium Farmers Take to the Streets In Protest Fuel Prices
BRUSSELS. June 17th. Farmers from the French-speaking region of Belgium took to the streets today to protest fuel prices and deregulation in the domestic food market. The farmers protesting in Brussels today claimed to be following the example of European truck drivers and fishermen who have led recent actions to call on their governments to control the effects of rising fuel prices. The farmers are also demanding the Belgian government take measures to alleviate the widespread crisis in the countryside. Organizers of today’s demonstrations say they are satisfied with the 5.000 farmers that filled the streets of Brussels with their tractors. Even more farmers are expected to hit the streets of Brussels tomorrow for the nationwide demonstration of the United Agricultural Front.
Thai Truckers Threaten Blockade of Bangkok If Demands Not Met by the 17th
“If the government doesn’t meet our demands by June 17, we will mobilize our trucks in Bangkok,” Thongyu Khongkan, secretary-general of the Land Transport Federation of Thailand, which has 400,000 trucks under its banner, told Reuters. [For more, go here.]
Ugandan Activists Begin Boycott of Shell
A group of activists in Uganda is raising support for a June 17th boycott of Shell fuel stations to protest against the sky rocketting oil prices in the country. Petrol prices in Uganda are speeding towards Ushs. 2,700 per litre and Shell is accused of exploiting international oil price trends by hoarding fuel and leading the industry-wide rise of pump prices. [For more, go here.]
Columbian Freight Drivers Stage National Strike
In Colombia, the world’s No. 3 coffee producer, freight drivers were also due to stage a national strike on Monday. Transport Minister Andres Uriel Gallego said officials were taking measures to guarantee food supplies.