Each Friday here at Uprising, we present a round-up of the demonstrations, debates and other manners of rabble-rousing that went under-reported during the week.
Hunger Strike at Guantanamo: Approximately one hundred detainees at Guantanamo Bay prison camp in Cuba have gone on hunger strike in protest of indefinite detention under cruel and inhumane conditions, lawyers representing two detainees revealed on Tuesday. The strike is also a reaction to unprecedented searches, confiscations, and desecrations of personal items by a new guard force. After lawyers representing detainees Kuwaitis Fayiz al-Kandari and Fawzi al-Odah first broke the news, subsequent lawyers confirmed that their clients have experienced significant weight and blood loss following weeks of refusing food along with most other inmates of Guantanamo’s Camp 6 facility. 166 men remain under indefinite detention at Camp 6, though 86 of them have been cleared for release since 2009.
SWP Imploding Over Handling of Rape Allegations: On Tuesday, 71 people resigned from the British Socialist Workers’ Party (SWP) as controversy continues following allegations of sexual assault committed by a senior member of the party. The SWP leadership has been accused of setting up a “kangaroo court” to address allegations of rape dating back to 2008. The exiting party members asserted that “the SWP leadership has done everything it can to silence members’ genuine concerns on the matter” including bullying, silencing, and expulsions from the party in an effort to suppress the controversy. This is the latest in a string of sexism scandals to tarnish Britain’s far left.
Corporate Enemies of the Internet: To coincide the World Day Against Cyber Censorship on Tuesday, the advocacy group Reporters Without Borders released a special report on Internet surveillance. The “state enemies of the Internet”named in the repor include Syria, China and Iran. At a time when around 180 people are imprisoned worldwide for disseminating news and information online, Reporters Without Borders decries the use by governments of increasingly sophisticated surveillance technology to monitor and intercept electronic communication and arrest citizen-journalists. The report also identifies five “digital era mercenaries” — Gamma, Trovicor, Hacking Team, Amesys and Blue Coat — that act as “digital era mercenaries” that sell products used by authoritarian governments to violate human rights.
Intervention in Bahrain: Thousands of protesters clashed with military and police forces Thursday near Manama, the capital city of Bahrain. Demonstrators took the streets to mark the second anniversary of the intervention that suppressed the country’s 2011 uprising. Since the country’s Shia majority demanded reforms, political freedom and equality, talks have stalled between opposition forces and the government, which clamped down on dissent through a Saudi-backed military intervention. Though road barricades were erected, Molotov cocktails thrown and tires burnt on the streets of Manama, justice remains to be served to a regime which has killed more than 80 protesters and subjected thousands to imprisonment and torture since the Arab Spring-led uprising.