Europe

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

24 October 2014

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

Turkish government seeks new police state powers

By Jean Shaoul, 21 October 2014

According to Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc, the Homeland Security Reform Bill would “give the upper hand to the police” and “more space to resort to new tools and measures.”

France, Germany hold talks on EU approval of France’s 2015 budget

By Kumaran Ira and Alex Lantier, 21 October 2014

Paris and Berlin are working on a behind-the-scenes deal for intensified, long-term austerity measures against the working class.

Tens of thousands march in London against low wages

By Paul Mitchell, 20 October 2014

At Saturday’s rally, the trade union leaders spoke as if they have had nothing to do with the onslaught on living standards and declining wages.

Europe’s police target refugees in operation Mos Maiorum

By Martin Kreikenbaum, 18 October 2014

Intensified checks at major traffic spots, borders and airports are aimed at identifying refugees without valid residency permits.

From pseudo-left to New Right: The trajectory of France’s Jean-Luc Mélenchon

By Alex Lantier and Kumaran Ira, 18 October 2014

Terrified by the global capitalist crisis, Mélenchon is denouncing socialism and building ties with the periphery of the neo-fascist National Front.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

17 October 2014

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

Who is responsible for the Ebola virus case in Spain?

By Kelly Taylor, 16 October 2014

Last Friday, nurses protested against the risks they face in treating Ebola patients.

German train drivers and pilots take strike action

By Dietmar Henning, 16 October 2014

The GDL and pilots’ union Cockpit are being deliberately provoked by Deutsche Bahn and Lufthansa.

Drone flying “Greater Albania” flag provokes soccer riot in Serbia

By Paul Mitchell, 16 October 2014

The violence at the UEFA qualifying match happened on the eve of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Belgrade to mark the 70th anniversary of the city’s liberation from Nazi occupation in World War II.

European Union threatens to veto France’s 2015 budget

By Stéphane Hugues and Alex Lantier, 14 October 2014

The French ruling class is considering even more ferocious austerity measures in response to the demands of the banks and the European Commission.

Swiss referendum rejects single public health insurance fund

By Stefan Gfeller, 14 October 2014

The Swiss Social Democrats’ proposed public health insurance scheme would not have improved the present anti-social system.

German media attacks train drivers’ right to strike

By Dietmar Henning, 13 October 2014

The attacks on the train drivers’ right to strike will extend to all other workers defending their wages and social gains.

Germany: Nine-hour strike by train drivers

By our reporters, 11 October 2014

The nationwide strike brought most long-distance, regional, freight and commuter trains to a halt.

Germany: Left Party bangs the drum for military action against the Islamic State

By Johannes Stern, 10 October 2014

Fourteen leading Left Party politicians have issued a statement titled "Save Kobani!"

UK unions begin to demobilise their own pathetic protest strike

By Robert Stevens, 10 October 2014

Strikes were called to give undeserved credibility to the Trades Union Congress’s (TUC) October 18 “Britain Needs a Pay Rise” march and rally in London.

Authors weigh in on the Amazon-Hachette war

By Christine Schofelt and Fred Mazelis, 10 October 2014

The ongoing e-commerce dispute raises fundamental questions about culture and how—and by whom—the immense advances in technology will be used and controlled.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

10 October 2014

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

Germany to deploy combat troops in Ukraine

By Christoph Dreier, 7 October 2014

The German government is planning to send troops into Ukraine for the first time since the Second World War.

Italian prime minister targets protection against layoffs

By Marianne Arens, 7 October 2014

The goal of the new jobs act is the creation of a labour market in which companies can hire and fire workers as they please, and exploit them for the lowest wages.

CGT union convicted of embezzling funds of France’s biggest works committee

By Pierre Mabut, 7 October 2014

The details of the case underscore how the French Communist Party and corrupt union bureaucracies long ago lost any base in the working class.

German train drivers vote to strike

By Ulrich Rippert, 6 October 2014

Deutsche Bahn cut its workforce from 350,000 to 190,000 between 2002 and 2012, which has led to constant overtime working.

In response to exposure of abuses, German interior minister attacks refugees

By Christoph Dreier, 4 October 2014

Thomas de Maizière blamed refugees for overcrowding in the camps, the lack of basic hygiene and the inhuman conditions in which they live.

Elections in Bulgaria take place amidst political and economic crisis

By Markus Salzmann, 4 October 2014

It is already clear that the second general election in 18 months will not bring stability to Bulgaria.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

3 October 2014

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

Britain begins bombing in Iraq

UK Conservatives pledge further attacks on democratic rights

By Robert Stevens, 2 October 2014

Home Secretary Theresa May announced that if the Conservatives are returned to power in 2015, they will fully implement the “snoopers charter.”

French government prepares to slash family, health benefits

By Stéphane Hugues, 2 October 2014

The cuts now being implemented will hit broad sections of the working class and the middle classes.

“Poisonous” economic combinations preparing new international crisis

By Nick Beams, 1 October 2014

According to the latest Geneva Report, with debt at historically elevated levels, any part of the world economy could set off a new financial crisis.

UK Tories outline next phase of their war on working class

By Robert Stevens, 1 October 2014

The Conservative Party’s plan to freeze welfare benefits will leave low-income families with children between £350 and £500 a year worse off.

German media and politicians promote rearmament

By Christoph Dreier, 29 September 2014

The demand for major increases in the military budget has moved to the center of German war propaganda.

Germany’s new war minister and Stern magazine

By Denis Krassnin, 29 September 2014

Germany’s defence minister and Stern news magazine both trace political roots to the Nazi era.

Britain’s parliament votes for war in Iraq, and also Syria

By Robert Stevens, 27 September 2014

Prime Minister David Cameron told parliament there was “no legal barrier” to Britain extending parliament’s approval for bombing Iraq to cover similar action in Syria.

German government sends arms to Iraq and backs US air strikes in Syria

By Johannes Stern, 27 September 2014

The German government plans to deliver weapons worth around 70 million euros to Iraq in the coming days.

French Prime Minister Valls denounces striking Air France pilots

By Stéphane Hugues, 27 September 2014

The head of the Socialist Party government denounced pilots as “selfish” as public support grows for the strikers.

Britain prepares to join US-led war in Iraq and Syria

By Paul Mitchell, 26 September 2014

Both the Conservatives and Labour Parties back British involvement in the US-led war, which is aimed at reasserting military dominance in Iraq and throughout the Middle East.

Air France pilots’ strike hardens despite government climbdown

By Antoine Lerougetel, 26 September 2014

The government’s decision, faced with the pilots’ strike, to force Air France to abandon plans for a new low-cost subsidiary signals a major political crisis in France.

Lufthansa insists on pension cuts for pilots

By Dietmar Henning, 26 September 2014

At talks Monday there was no indication of a deal as Lufthansa refuses to budge from its original plans to cut pilots’ retirement provisions.

Danish Socialist Workers Party supports imperialist war in the Middle East

By Christoph Dreier, 26 September 2014

The Danish section of the United Secretariat, the Socialist Workers Party, joined the vote to send an Air Force Hercules transport plane carrying arms to Iraq.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

26 September 2014

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

Brutal police provocation at Greek protest over fascist murder of rapper

By John Vassilopoulos, 24 September 2014

Greek police carried out mass arrests and attacked demonstrators at a protest marking the first anniversary since the killing of rapper Pavlos Fyssas by a fascist Golden Dawn member.

Air France management threatens pilots as strike enters second week

By Kumaran Ira, 23 September 2014

Air France is demanding deep cuts in wages, benefits, and working conditions.

Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy returns to politics

By Alex Lantier and Stéphane Hugues, 22 September 2014

Sarkozy’s hour-long prime time TV interview painted a stark picture of political crisis in France and across Europe.

Spain’s most powerful banker warned of “radicalisation”

By Vicky Short, 22 September 2014

Four days before his death on September 10, Emilio Botín invited Spanish journalists to a dinner at which he revealed his fears about the “radicalisation” of Spain.

Air France pilots strike against low wages

By Antoine Lerougetel, 20 September 2014

Seventy-five percent of Air France pilots have been on strike since Monday.

Google report documents surge in electronic surveillance requests by governments worldwide

By Thomas Gaist, 20 September 2014

Google complies with at least 84 percent of US government data requests, which have risen by 250 percent during the past five years.

France’s New Anti-capitalist Party orients to Socialist Party critics of Hollande

By Stéphane Hugues and Alex Lantier, 20 September 2014

The NPA complacently dismisses the idea of a political crisis in France to justify its continuing orientation to the Socialist Party (PS) amid the PS’ ongoing collapse.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

19 September 2014

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

Troika demands further austerity in Greece

By Robert Stevens, 13 September 2014

Greece has to demonstrate that it has imposed the necessary attacks on workers living standards and will match an agreed timetable for further measures to receive additional loans.

Spain: Catalan separatist leader declares Scottish vote “an example for us”

By Alejandro López, 12 September 2014

The separatists in Catalonia and Scotland invoke a false historical narrative that depicts each region as an oppressed nation.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

12 September 2014

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

Germany: Union leader condemns train drivers’ strike

By Dietmar Henning, 11 September 2014

The new chairman of the German Trade Union Federation, Reiner Hoffmann, has sided with corporate management against the strikers.

Dutch report into Ukraine jetliner disaster continues cover-up

By Robert Stevens, 10 September 2014

The Dutch Safety Board’s preliminary report into the crash of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is being portrayed by imperialist governments as confirmation that anti-Kiev rebels in eastern Ukraine shot down the plane.

France’s new government shaken by early ministerial resignation

By Anthony Torres, 10 September 2014

The Elysée presidential palace announced the resignation of Thomas Thévenoud, the minister for foreign trade, tourism, and overseas Frenchmen.

Germany: Official report speaks of “deliberate sabotage” by secret service in NSU case

By Sven Heymann, 10 September 2014

The final report of the Thuringia state parliamentary committee of inquiry into the series of murders by the far-right National Socialist Underground makes serious allegations against the state security authorities.

US, EU intensify military threats against Russia

By Kumaran Ira, 10 September 2014

The US and the EU are escalating military threats against Russia, while preparing a raft of new economic sanctions targeting key sections of the Russian economy.

German train drivers union to hold warning strike Tuesday

By Dietmar Henning, 8 September 2014

The German Trade Union Federation (DGB) and the government have announced measures to prevent strikes by pilots, train drivers and many other workers.

France: Calais mayor demands crackdown on migrants, threatens to block port

By Stéphane Hugues, 6 September 2014

Natacha Bouchart is demanding that Britain help fund the repression of migrants trapped in Calais as they seek to reach Britain.

France stops deal to deliver Mistral helicopter carrier ships to Russia

By Stéphane Hugues, 5 September 2014

The decision to suspend the deal points to the growing inter-imperialist tensions inside NATO provoked by its proxy war in Ukraine.

Germany: ThyssenKrupp announces more job cuts

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 2 September 2014

The company official who announced the layoffs was Oliver Burkard, who recently quit his post as local boss of the IG Metall union.

Western threats against Russia increase danger of nuclear war

By Johannes Stern, 30 August 2014

The moves toward Ukrainian membership in NATO underscore the fact that next week’s NATO summit will be aimed at preparing for a possible war against Russia.

Germany sends troops to Iraq

By Wolfgang Weber, 30 August 2014

The German intervention in Iraq is part of the new militarist foreign policy announced by the government at the start of the year.

Der Spiegel calls for military build-up in Germany

By Sven Heymann, 30 August 2014

Without saying it openly, the Spiegel authors suggest that the simplest solution to lagging military recruitment would be to reintroduce conscription.

The collapse of the French government: A crisis of capitalist rule in Europe

By Alex Lantier, 29 August 2014

The entire framework of official “left” politics in France and across Europe is collapsing.

UK minister signals further welfare cuts ahead of 2015 general election

By Tony Robson, 23 August 2014

In a keynote address, the top British official for Work and Pensions signaled the further intensification of his government’s assault on social spending.

War and social attacks spread throughout Ukraine

By Christoph Dreier, 22 August 2014

The Ukrainian army has expanded its offensive against the rebel-controlled cities of Luhansk and Donetsk, fighting house-to-house battles with rebel groups.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

22 August 2014

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

Scottish National Party issues its hollow “Declaration of Opportunity”

By Jordan Shilton, 22 August 2014

Under conditions of the deepest crisis of global capitalism since the 1930s, working people are to believe that a new capitalist mini-state offers the basis for a return to social reformism.

EU advisors advocate use of military against strikes and protests

By Denis Krassnin, 19 August 2014

An EU think tank has advised governments to protect the rich from the poor by suppressing social protests.

UK rail union’s “Listen to London” conference a fiasco

By Michael Barnes, 12 August 2014

Workers stayed away from the RMT’s conference called to justify the sellout of rail strikes.

Germany’s Left Party suppresses opposition to militarism

By Ulrich Rippert, 9 August 2014

The Left Party is using the war in Gaza as an opportunity to place itself unconditionally behind the German government’s foreign policy.

German commission undermines parliametary approval requirement for military operations

By Elizabeth Zimmermann, 9 August 2014

Largely unnoticed by the public, a commission of former defence politicians as well as military experts has been working to repeal the requirement that military operations abroad obtain parliamentary approval.

UK government attempts to conceal its involvement in rendition and torture

By Robert Stevens, 9 August 2014

The British government has approached the US in an attempt to censor information regarding Britain’s involvement in rendition and torture.

Socialist Equality Party (UK) holds meeting in Bradford against war in Gaza

By our reporters, 9 August 2014

The meeting outlined a socialist strategy against war based on the unification of the international working class.

What lies behind the warmongering by Der Spiegel?

By Christoph Dreier, 8 August 2014

Germany’s leading news magazine, Der Spiegel, is demanding a confrontation with Russia.

London mayor threatens to dock pay of striking firefighters

By Allison Smith and Paul Bond, 8 August 2014

Mayor Boris Johnson has previously imposed cuts to fire services, including the closure of fire stations.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

2 August 2014

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

German firm WMF plans elimination of 700 jobs

By K. Nesan, 29 July 2014

The main shareholder in the WMF group is the New York-based investment firm KKR.

Executive pay at German steelmaker ThyssenKrupp swells amid mass layoffs

By Elisabeth Zimmermann, 26 July 2014

The salaries of top executives at Germany’s ThyssenKrupp increased by up to 69 percent last year, even as the company laid off thousands of workers.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

25 July 2014

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

Contradictions of capitalism underlie monetary policy dispute

By Nick Beams, 24 July 2014

A war of words over monetary policy has erupted between the Bank for International Settlements and major central banks.

Keolis to operate London’s Docklands Light Railway for seven years

By Paul Bond, 17 July 2014

The Docklands Light Railway, established to serve London’s financial district, has long been the testing ground for a more generalised assault on workers’ conditions.

Pakistani migrant fruit pickers in Greece strike over inhuman conditions

By John Vassilopoulos, 15 July 2014

Local police are playing a central role in silencing opposition to the inhuman conditions the workers face, including the non-payment of wages.

Hundreds demonstrate in Dublin in support of locked-out waste collection workers

By Jordan Shilton, 15 July 2014

Workers in Dublin are protesting a lockout imposed by Greyhound Recycling.

German government demands departure of US spy chief

By Peter Schwarz, 11 July 2014

The exposure of a second US spy in Germany in five days has unleashed a major scandal.

Dozens of refugees suffocate in boat off the coast of Italy

By Martin Kriekenbaum, 7 July 2014

On June 30, the Italian Coast Guard discovered the bodies of 45 refugees in an overcrowded fishing boat.

Greek power workers threatened with state strikebreaking

By John Vassilopoulos, 5 July 2014

Workers at the Public Power Corporation in Greece began a 48-hour strike from midnight on Wednesday.

Ex-French President Nicolas Sarkozy denies influence peddling charges

By Kumaran Ira, 5 July 2014

After being detained and indicted for corruption and influence peddling, Sarkozy denied the charges in an interview on Europe1 radio and TF1 television Wednesday.

German parliament agrees to minimum wage

By Dietmar Henning, 5 July 2014

The main purpose of the new German minimum wage is to silence critics of the country’s low-wage sector.

German army to be equipped with drones

By Christoph Dreier, 5 July 2014

On Wednesday, German defence minister Ursula Von der Leyen announced to parliament that the army is to be equipped with drones capable of carrying weapons.

UK police make one million stop and searches of young people

By Robert Stevens, 5 July 2014

Only 10 percent of searches lead to an arrest and black people are six times more likely to be stopped than whites.

UK unions propose one-day protest strike over pay

By Tony Robson, 2 July 2014

Since coming to power in May 2010, the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition has been able to mount a one-sided assault on the working class thanks to the unions.

German automaker BMW reports record sales, prepares attacks on workers

By Michael Regens, 30 June 2014

In close collaboration with the trade unions, Germany’s third largest automaker is planning major wage cuts and rationalisation measures.

Jobs losses at Kellogg’s UK part of global profit drive

By Danny Richardson, 25 June 2014

Job cuts form part of the firm’s Global Business Services (GBS) restructuring plans.

Workers Struggles: Europe, Middle East & Africa

20 June 2014

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

Workers speak out against privatization of French railways

By Anthony Torres, 19 June 2014

Approximately 1,000 demonstrators gathered in Paris on June 17 to protest the Socialist Party government’s planned privatization of the French railways.

Bulgaria suspends construction of South Stream pipeline

By our correspondents, 19 June 2014

The EU and US have forced Bulgaria to halt construction of a pipeline that would allow Russian gas supplies to Europe to bypass Ukraine.

Irish Labour Party members hold ballot for new leader

By Dermot Quinn and Jordan Shilton, 19 June 2014

The contest was triggered last month by the resignation of Deputy Prime Minister and Labour Leader Eamon Gilmore.

French rail workers, artists protest social cuts

By Kumaran Ira, 16 June 2014

Nationwide strikes involving rail and cultural workers reflect rising social opposition to the Socialist Party government.

After the European elections

EU torn by conflict over European Commission president

By Peter Schwarz, 14 June 2014

Behind the dispute over Jean-Claude Juncker lie divergent interests and national conflicts that place the future of the EU in question.

UK schools witchhunted by government to foster anti-Muslim sentiment

By Robert Stevens, 12 June 2014

The witchhunt began in November when an anonymous letter, now widely accepted to have been a hoax, was sent to the media.