Asia

India invites Japan for naval exercises with US

By Arun Kumar, 5 September 2015

The decision by Prime Minister Modi to hold trilateral naval games involving India, the US and Japan has been encouraged by Washington as part of its aggressive “pivot” against China.

Sri Lankan prime minister appoints huge cabinet

By K. Ratnayake, 5 September 2015

The new US-backed government is trying to cement its position and prepare to ram through harsh austerity measures.

China holds military parade to mark anniversary of victory over Japan

By Ben McGrath, 4 September 2015

Yesterday’s event was part of push to promote Chinese nationalism as Beijing faces intense pressure from the US, economic downturn and social unrest.

Millions of Indian workers strike against Modi government’s pro-market reforms

By our correspondents, 3 September 2015

While workers are determined to defend their jobs and living conditions, the unions used the strike to let off steam and keep workers tied to the political establishment.

Abe accelerates the remilitarisation of Japan

By Peter Symonds, 2 September 2015

The latest defence budget increase, to fund the purchase of sophisticated new hardware and the expansion of bases, will push Japanese military spending to record levels.

Sri Lankan president announces “national unity government”

By K. Ratnayake, 2 September 2015

The new coalition government is an attempt by the ruling class parties to close ranks in order to impose savage austerity measures on the working class.

US military continues build-up in North East Asia

By Ben McGrath, 1 September 2015

The conclusion of war games saw the largest-ever joint live-fire drill between the US and South Korea.

Mass anti-government rallies in Malaysia

By John Roberts and Peter Symonds, 1 September 2015

Ruling class divisions are fuelled by a deteriorating economy, which has been hard-hit by China’s slowdown, falling commodity prices and regional competition for investment.

US shift on Sri Lankan war crimes probe exposes Tamil nationalists

By K. Nesan, 1 September 2015

By supporting the US-backed government, the Tamil nationalists are complicit in allowing the crimes of the civil war to go unpunished.

Indian unions to hold one-day national strike

By Deepal Jayasekera, 1 September 2015

The unions have called the September 2 strike not to mobilize workers and the rural toilers against the Modi government and its neoliberal policies but to contain the growing opposition to them.

Mass protests in Japan oppose “collective self-defence” laws

By Ben McGrath, 31 August 2015

The widespread hostility to the new security laws reflects the deep-rooted anti-war sentiment in Japan, especially in the working class.

Sri Lankan political parties hail US shift on war crimes probe

By Saman Gunadasa, 31 August 2015

This stance not only exposes the pro-imperialist character of these parties but their involvement and complicity in the Sri Lankan human rights atrocities.

Chinese officials, company executives detained over Tianjin explosion

By Oscar Grenfell, 29 August 2015

Underlying the ruling Chinese Communist Party’s efforts to find scapegoats for the Tianjin disaster is the deepening crisis of the entire regime.

China’s economic downturn raises concerns about political instability

By Peter Symonds, 28 August 2015

Questions are already being raised about the future of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang who is immediately responsible for economic policy.

US announces shift on Sri Lankan war crimes investigation

By K. Ratnayake, 27 August 2015

The announcement confirms that Washington has cynically exploited “human rights” in Sri Lanka to advance its interests, particularly against China.

India reaches into the South Pacific to counter China

By John Braddock, 27 August 2015

The summit was part of Indian efforts to build defence and strategic ties in the Asia-Pacific, designed to counter Chinese influence.

Japanese PM snubs China’s World War II victory ceremony

By Peter Symonds, 26 August 2015

Abe’s presence at Chinese ceremonies to mark the end of the “War of Resistance to Japanese Aggression” would have been unacceptable to the extreme right in Japan.

North and South Korea agree to ease tensions following high-level talks

By Ben McGrath, 26 August 2015

With the US applying immense pressure to the North Korean regime, recent events demonstrate how a relatively minor episode can escalate rapidly into armed conflict.

Britain’s Financial Times hails Sri Lankan election result

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 26 August 2015

The Financial Times editorial is a damning indictment of the Sri Lankan pseudo-left organisations that sided with the pro-US UNP in the election.

Economic turmoil heightens infighting in Chinese regime

By Peter Symonds, 25 August 2015

A New York Times article highlights concerns in Washington over the danger of political turmoil in Beijing and the degree to which global capitalism is dependent on China.

Worker killed in another Chinese factory explosion

By Ben McGrath, 25 August 2015

This latest incident in Shandong province drives home the disregard for safety in China’s factories in the pursuit of profit.

Tensions remain high on Korean Peninsula

By Ben McGrath, 24 August 2015

Despite talks between North and South Korea, both sides continue to issue threats and counter-threats.

Sri Lankan corporate elite demands “tough” economic decisions from new government

By Saman Gunadasa, 24 August 2015

The “national unity government” will impose severe austerity measures and will not hesitate to use police-state measures against any resistance by working people.

Pro-US UNP leader sworn in as new Sri Lankan prime minister

By K. Ratnayake, 22 August 2015

The new coalition government will deepen the assault on the democratic rights and living standards of working people and enmesh the island in US war preparations against China.

North and South Korea exchange artillery fire across border

By Ben McGrath, 21 August 2015

The hostilities follow weeks of accusations and counter-accusations since two South Korean soldiers were maimed by landmines.

China: Details emerge of safety violations and corruption in Tianjin

By James Cogan, 21 August 2015

The warehouse that exploded was only able to operate because of the owners’ political connections.

Sri Lanka: “National unity government” to implement harsh austerity measures

By W. A. Sunil, 21 August 2015

During the election, the SEP alone warned that all the capitalist parties were united in their determination to impose the burden of the economic crisis onto working people.

The significance of the SEP’s vote in Sri Lankan elections

By Deepal Jayasekera, 20 August 2015

The support for the SEP indicates a turn by an advanced section of workers and the oppressed masses towards the perspective of socialist internationalism.

Pro-US United National Party to form government in Sri Lanka

By Saman Gunadasa, 19 August 2015

While the UNP win has blocked a comeback by former President Mahinda Rajapakse, the political turmoil in Colombo will only continue and deepen.

Chinese official, company managers under investigation after Tianjin disaster

By James Cogan, 19 August 2015

China’s national director of the State Administration of Work Safety, Yang Dongliang, has been removed from his position.

Thai junta exploits Bangkok bombing

By Tom Peters, 19 August 2015

While the perpetrator of Monday’s attack has not been identified, the US-backed military regime is using it as a pretext to mobilise the armed forces and intimidate opponents.

Sri Lankan election results foreshadow political upheavals

By K. Ratnayake, 18 August 2015

Whichever party—the UNP or SLFP—finally forms the next government will accelerate the austerity agenda being demanded by the IMF.

Japan contracts as world economy lurches toward depression

By Barry Grey, 18 August 2015

The Japanese report followed a wave of negative data pointing to sharply slower growth in China and last week’s surprise devaluation of the renminbi.

Chinese regime seeks to censor outrage over Tianjin disaster

By James Cogan, 18 August 2015

A major reason for the popular anger is the reality that a catastrophe of similar or greater dimensions could occur any day, in any number of Chinese cities and towns.

Japanese PM’s speech on World War II riddled with duplicity

By Peter Symonds, 17 August 2015

Abe’s speech maintained a veneer of pacifism and contrition even as his government expands Japan’s military forces and prepares for new wars.

Sri Lankan general election signals deepening political instability

By our correspondent, 17 August 2015

Today’s election is being held in the wake of a US-backed regime-change operation in January that ousted former President Rajapakse because of his ties with China.

Paris public meeting discusses world significance of Sri Lankan elections

By our reporters, 17 August 2015

International Committee of the Fourth International supporters held a well-attended meeting to discuss the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka) election campaign.

The Tianjin explosions and the discrediting of capitalism

By James Cogan, 15 August 2015

The promises that the Chinese masses would ultimately benefit from rampant capitalist development are lying in tatters.

Sri Lankan general election 2015

Vote for the Socialist Equality Party!

For socialist program against war, austerity and to defend democratic rights! For a workers and peasants government!

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 15 August 2015

The SEP is standing 43 candidates in three of the country’s 22 electoral districts—Colombo, Jaffna and Nuwara Eliya.

Tamil nationalist groups adopt pro-imperialist policy in Sri Lankan elections

By K. Nesan and V. Gnana, 15 August 2015

The Tamil National People’s Front and the Crusaders for Democracy are aligned with the Sirisena government and US imperialism against Tamil and Sinhala workers.

Sri Lankan president to block Rajapakse as prime minister

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 15 August 2015

Sirisena’s letter, aimed at bolstering the UNP’s electoral prospects, underscores the deep political crisis surrounding the whole election.

China: More than 50 dead in Tianjin factory explosion

By Oscar Grenfell, 14 August 2015

The Chinese regime has responded nervously to the disaster, which is intensifying its political crisis.

Explosion wreaks destruction in Chinese city of Tianjin

By James Cogan, 13 August 2015

The Tianjin explosion is the latest in the continuous stream of industrial disasters that kill and maim thousands of Chinese workers.

Protesters denounce military legislation as Japan marks anniversary of nuclear bombings

By Ben McGrath, 11 August 2015

A Nagasaki survivor recounted the horrors of the blast and denounced Prime Minister Abe’s moves to amend Japan’s post-World War II constitution.

Sri Lankan election: Pro-US UNP appeals to big business

By Rohantha De Silva, 11 August 2015

The promotion of the UNP, the country’s oldest bourgeois party steeped in crimes against the working class, as a champion of democracy is a complete fraud.

Australian Federal Police aid Sri Lankan unit implicated in torture

By Oscar Grenfell, 10 August 2015

The AFP has provided equipment and training to Sri Lanka’s CID, long accused of kidnappings and human rights abuses.

SEP campaign receives support in northern Sri Lanka

By our correspondent, 10 August 2015

The Socialist Equality Party held its second northern Sri Lankan election meeting at Karainagar, where SEP campaigners held lively discussions with local residents.

The 70th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima

By Peter Symonds, 6 August 2015

Washington’s use of the atomic weapons was aimed at terrorising not just the Japanese regime, but above all the Soviet Union, and ensuring post-war American global dominance.

Flooding across South Asia affects millions of people

By Oscar Grenfell, 6 August 2015

Monsoonal downpours have created a humanitarian disaster, with the most impoverished and oppressed people among the worst affected.

Sri Lankan irrigation department residents discuss SEP policies

By our correspondent, 6 August 2015

Irrigation department and other local workers in Ratmalana, near Colombo, voice their anger over rising poverty and increasing exploitation.

Australian government announces $89 billion naval expansion

By Peter Symonds, 5 August 2015

The naval build-up is an integral part of the military preparations by the US and its allies throughout Asia for war against China.

Tamil National Alliance presents pro-imperialist manifesto in Sri Lankan elections

By K. Nesan, 5 August 2015

The election manifesto aligns the TNA with the policies of Washington and the Colombo government installed in a US-engineered regime-change operation.

Sri Lanka: JVP election manifesto woos big business

By W. A. Sunil, 4 August 2015

Under conditions of widespread alienation from the two main capitalist parties, the JVP is trying to show the ruling elites that it is a viable alternative.

Manifesto of the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka) for the 2015 general election

Against war and austerity! Fight for a workers’ and peasants’ government and a socialist program!

By the Socialist Equality Party, 3 August 2015

The SEP’s campaign aims to mobilize workers and youth in opposition to war and attacks against democratic rights, on the basis of socialist internationalism.

Unidentified gunmen fire on Sri Lankan election rally

By Peter Symonds, 1 August 2015

The violent attack is another symptom of the political tensions underpinning the bitter rivalry in the August 17 election campaign.

Tensions between India and Pakistan escalate despite Modi-Sharif meeting

By Sampath Perera, 1 August 2015

India’s 15-month-old BJP government continues to integrate New Delhi ever more completely into Washington’s anti-China “pivot.”

Sri Lanka: SEP campaigns against evictions in Colombo

By our correspondents, 31 July 2015

SEP candidates spoke in Wanathamulla, where residents have been the target of government “slum eviction” operations.

Witch-hunt continues against Sri Lankan tea estate workers

By M. Thevarajah, 30 July 2015

The victimisation of Ingestre workers is part of an escalating offensive by plantation companies to slash costs and drive up productivity.

Sri Lanka: Pseudo-left USP willing to ally with any capitalist party

By R. Shreeharan, 29 July 2015

The United Socialist Party takes no responsibility for the disasters that its previous alliances with bourgeois parties have helped bring about for the working class.

The international significance of the Sri Lankan general election

By Peter Symonds, 28 July 2015

The political crisis in Sri Lanka is an acute expression of the breakdown of global capitalism, which is fueling bitter geo-political rivalries and social counterrevolution against the working class.

Amid ongoing protests, Japan’s upper house to discuss military bills

By Ben McGrath, 27 July 2015

According to opinion polls, more than 60 percent of the population opposes security legislation that allows Japan to take part in US-led wars.

Socialist Equality Party campaigners win support in Sri Lanka’s plantation district

By our correspondents, 27 July 2015

SEP supporters spoke with workers and youth in the Nuwara Eliya district who expressed deep opposition to the establishment parties and the trade unions.

Further revelations in South Korean hacking scandal

By Ben McGrath, 25 July 2015

Suspicions that the NIS spied on political opponents continue to grow as more information comes to light.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

25 July 2015

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

Japanese government ramps up tensions with China

By Peter Symonds, 23 July 2015

By demanding a halt to China’s oil-and-gas exploration platforms in the East China Sea, Tokyo is adding another potential flashpoint for conflict with Beijing.

Japan competes with China over port investment in Bangladesh

By Sarath Kumara, 22 July 2015

In line with the US “pivot,” Japan hopes that its Bangladesh investments will boost its political weight in South Asia and undercut Chinese influence.

Veteran filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki denounces government plans to remilitarise Japan

By Richard Phillips, 21 July 2015

Miyazaki’s denunciations of the Abe government are another indication of widespread anti-war sentiment in Japan.

Chinese state banks commit $200 billion to stem market selloff

By Nick Beams, 20 July 2015

The massive bank intervention was one of a series of measures initiated by the government and financial authorities to halt the plunge in share values.

Sri Lankan president pledges to block rival

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 18 July 2015

Sirisena’s willingness to use his autocratic powers to prevent Rajapakse becoming prime minister exposes the fraudulent claim that his election represented a “democratic revolution.”

Japanese government pushes militarist legislation amid mass protests

By Oscar Grenfell, 17 July 2015

The passage of the laws marks a further stage in the militarist “reinterpretation” of Japan’s nominally pacifist constitution.

South Korea’s intelligence agency purchased spyware from Hacking Team

By Ben McGrath, 16 July 2015

The latest revelation further underscores the anti-democratic character of the South Korean state and its spy agencies.

Socialist Equality Party fields 43 candidates in Sri Lankan general elections

By our correspondent, 16 July 2015

The SEP’s election slates are headed by leading party members with long-standing records of fighting for socialist internationalism.

Australian Greens senator talks of war with China

By James Cogan, 15 July 2015

Scott Ludlam epitomises the cynical manner in which a layer of the Greens occasionally pose as “left” and “anti-war.”

Sri Lanka: SEP meeting defends victimised plantation workers

By our correspondents, 15 July 2015

Central hills plantation workers attend SEP public meeting in defiance of ongoing union and police harassment.

Washington’s hypocritical denunciations of Chinese “land reclamation” in the South China Sea

By Oscar Grenfell, 14 July 2015

The outposts of Vietnam and other claimants in the region cover a far broader expanse than those of China.

Report urges closer US-Australian military collaboration against China

By Peter Symonds, 14 July 2015

The joint US-Australian think tank report documents the extent to which Australia has already become a major base of operations for the US military in Asia.

SEP to stand in Sri Lankan general election

By the Socialist Equality Party, 13 July 2015

The SEP is the only party advancing an internationalist and socialist program against war, austerity and attacks on democratic rights.

Malaysian prime minister engulfed in corruption scandal

By John Roberts, 11 July 2015

The Wall Street Journal allegations have fanned a crisis that threatens Najib’s political position and could destabilise the ruling UMNO.

Obama welcomes Vietnam’s Communist Party head

By Peter Symonds, 10 July 2015

Trong’s very presence in the White House sends a strong message regarding Hanoi’s closer ties to Washington, directed against Beijing.

US lawyers argue Manila’s case against China in The Hague

By Joseph Santolan, 9 July 2015

The legal case, which aims to invalidate China’s territorial claim to the South China Sea, is part of Washington’s campaign against Beijing.

The significance of the Chinese stock market rout

By Nick Beams, 8 July 2015

The Chinese regime sought to create a social base of support in better-off sections of the middle class, which are now being hammered by the stock market plunge.

China’s share plunge casts lengthening shadow over global markets

By Nick Beams, 7 July 2015

The Chinese government has thrown the “kitchen sink” at the falling share market but to no avail.

Chinese government desperate to halt market slide

By Nick Beams, 6 July 2015

The Chinese central bank’s commitment to provide funds to financial markets indicates growing concern in government circles over the depth of the stock market fall.

Colombo’s “fastest growing tourism” status obtained at the poor’s expense

By Vilani Peiris, 4 July 2015

The transformation of Colombo into a destination for wealthy tourists is the product of ruthless attacks on the inner-city poor, including mass evictions.

Chinese stocks continue to fall despite attempted counter-measures

By Nick Beams, 3 July 2015

The World Bank has again described the Chinese financial system as unbalanced and potentially unstable.

Ongoing tensions in South China Sea as Chinese-led investment bank formally launched

By Oliver Campbell, 2 July 2015

The establishment of the bank, a blow to US plans for hegemony in the Asia-Pacific, was accompanied by a ratcheting up of Washington’s campaign against China.

Support grows for victimised Sri Lankan tea estate workers

By our correspondents, 1 July 2015

Plantation workers denounce frame-up charges against Deeside estate workers.

Malaysia’s opposition coalition breaks apart

By John Roberts, 30 June 2015

The collapse of the three-party pact changes the political landscape and points to growing instability.

Sri Lanka SEP calls public meeting to defend victimised plantation workers

30 June 2015

The Glenugie tea plantation workers were victimised for playing a leading role in a three-day strike in February against an arbitrary increase in workloads.

Sri Lankan president dissolves parliament amid political uncertainty

By K. Ratnayake, 29 June 2015

Since the January 8 presidential election, Sirisena and his minority government have faced one crisis after another.

Obama administration uses bilateral talks to ramp up pressure on China

By Oliver Campbell, 27 June 2015

The talks took place amid an escalation of Washington’s diplomatic, military and economic campaign against China.

Over 1,100 killed by heat wave in Pakistan

By Sampath Perera, 27 June 2015

The victims have died because of electricity outages, water supply shortages, inadequate healthcare facilities and government indifference.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

27 June 2015

The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.

SEP public meeting assesses political turmoil in Sri Lanka

By our correspondents, 26 June 2015

A successful meeting in Colombo examined the turmoil confronting President Sirisena’s government.

SEP/IYSSE public meetings to discuss Sri Lankan political crisis

25 June 2015

The Socialist Equality Party and the International Youth and Students for Social Equality are holding public meetings throughout Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka’s Punguduthivu: An island devastated by war

By Subash Somachandran and M. Kalaimaaran, 24 June 2015

Unbearable social conditions and de facto military rule continue after nearly three decades of war in Sri Lanka’s north.

MERS outbreak exposes South Korean government’s lack of preparation

By Ben McGrath, 23 June 2015

The spread of the virus has been compounded by a lack of preparation and measures for dealing with the sick.

Child suicides highlight growing social crisis in China

By Oliver Campbell, 22 June 2015

The apparent suicide deaths of four young children in the impoverished Guizhou province underscores the desperate plight facing millions of rural poor.

Japanese protests denounce new military legislation

By Ben McGrath, 20 June 2015

Thousands gathered over the weekend to oppose bills to expand the role of the armed forces and its capacity to wage war.

Delay on TPP prompts warnings to US from Asia

By Nick Beams, 19 June 2015

The US has received a blunt warning about shifting relations in Asia from Singapore’s foreign minister.