Asia

Ex-CIA chief calls for “firm” Australian action against China

By Mike Head, 26 June 2017

David Petraeus’ appearance at the Liberal Party dinner was the latest intervention into Australian politics by visiting senior figures within the US military-intelligence complex.

Floods devastate Bangladesh and parts of India, killing more than 185

By Rohantha De Silva, 26 June 2017

Those most affected are the rural poor, low-wage workers and rickshaw pullers living in flood- and landslide-prone areas, where living costs are relatively low.

Sri Lankan free trade zone workers call for release of Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 23 June 2017

Workers at Sri Lanka’s oldest and largest free trade zone condemn the frameup and jailing of Indian autoworkers and call for a united international campaign.

US demands “much greater” Chinese pressure on North Korea, or else

By Peter Symonds, 22 June 2017

While continuing to press China over North Korea, the Trump administration is warning that the US will resort to other measures—including military action—if there are no results.

South Korean president tries to smooth disagreements with Washington

By Ben McGrath, 22 June 2017

Seoul has suggested reaching out to Pyongyang as the US ramps up pressure on North Korea.

Trump takes another step towards war with North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 21 June 2017

By declaring that Chinese pressure on Pyongyang has “not worked out,” Trump is left with few options but to launch reckless military attacks on North Korea.

Infighting in Tamil party signifies deep political crisis in Sri Lanka

By K. Ratnayake, 21 June 2017

Factional clashes within the Tamil elite have nothing to do with defending democratic rights but are tactical differences over how best to advance their own interests.

On-the-Spot from New Delhi

Lawyer for Maruti Suzuki workers denounces frame-up

By our correspondents, 21 June 2017

“The police were not looking for suspects,” senior advocate Rebecca John told the WSWS. “They were only interested in rounding up as many workers as possible.”

South Korean president offers phony welfare pledges

By Ben McGrath, 20 June 2017

The new government’s promises are a smokescreen to obscure its pro-capitalist policies, counter mounting discontent and prevent the eruption of social unrest.

US ex-basketballer heads to North Korea to “open door”

By Peter Symonds, 15 June 2017

Given the accelerating US confrontation with North Korea, the chances that Rodman’s visit can open meaningful talks between the two countries appear remote.

China, Japan take tentative steps to revive relations

By Kurt Brown, 14 June 2017

China’s top foreign policy official held three days of talks with senior Japanese officials, including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

India and Pakistan admitted to Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 14 June 2017

Despite India and Pakistan becoming full SCO members, there has been no de-escalation of war tensions between the two nuclear-armed South Asian rivals.

Indian authorities seek to imprison more Maruti Suzuki workers on frame-up charges

By Shannon Jones, 13 June 2017

The Haryana state government is appealing the acquittal of 117 Maruti Suzuki workers on bogus charges and demanding harsher sentences for 18 other workers.

South Korea delays THAAD battery installation

By Ben McGrath, 13 June 2017

Washington is concerned that the new government in Seoul is pursuing closer relations with China.

Four years since the Rana Plaza disaster

Bangladesh apparel workers still confront appalling conditions

By Sarath Kumara, 13 June 2017

Four years after the collapse of the Rana Plaza building in Bangladesh, garment workers continue to labour in unsafe conditions for very low wages.

India: Madhya Pradesh police shoot protesting farmers

By Deepal Jayasekera, 9 June 2017

Mass demonstrations by farmers are intensifying the crisis of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government.

Following new UN sanctions, North Korea tests more missiles

By Peter Symonds, 8 June 2017

A US nuclear-powered attack submarine docked in South Korea on Tuesday—the latest step in Washington’s military build-up near the Korean Peninsula.

Sri Lankan flood victims denounce government response to disaster

By our correspondents, 8 June 2017

Flood and landslide survivors say they have not received adequate emergency food supplies and fear destitution.

Sri Lankan students demand release of framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 7 June 2017

Kelaniya University students denounced the jailing of the Indian autoworkers and supported the international campaign to free them.

Floods in Sri Lanka: Government responsible for another social disaster

By the Socialist Equality Party (Sri Lanka), 5 June 2017

The deaths and human suffering are results of the callous disregard for the lives of ordinary people by successive governments dedicated to defending the profit system.

Political lessons of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre in China

By James Cogan, 5 June 2017

Each year, the Stalinist regime mobilises its police state apparatus to prevent any commemoration of the massacre, which was aimed at suppressing a potentially revolutionary movement of the Chinese working class.

Shangri La Dialogue: US Defence Secretary, Australian PM threaten North Korea, China

By Peter Symonds, 3 June 2017

The premier Asian strategic conference is taking place as the US threatens war against North Korea and continues its relentless military build-up.

Silence in the Courts—a film about judicial corruption in Sri Lanka

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 3 June 2017

Prasanna Vithanage’s documentary deals with the sexual assault of two village women by a magistrate and the subsequent cover-up.

Terror scare inflames martial law crisis in the Philippines

By Joseph Santolan, 2 June 2017

Over 22 million Filipinos on the southern island of Mindanao have been living under conditions of military dictatorship for the past week.

Germany turns to Asia

By Johannes Stern, 1 June 2017

In the midst of a historic crisis in transatlantic relations, Berlin is working systematically to expand political and economic ties with Asia.

Sri Lankan government claims EU tariff facility will solve economic ills

By Saman Gunadasa, 1 June 2017

The GSP+ will not resolve the problems facing the economy, but will result in further attacks on workers’ wages, conditions and basic rights.

Senator John McCain visits Australia to reinforce US alliance

By James Cogan, 31 May 2017

McCain issued appeals and warnings to the Australian ruling class not to deviate from its strategic alignment with the US.

US anti-missile test sends warning to North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 31 May 2017

The successful interception of a dummy ICBM demonstrates to North Korea and also China that the US can launch a nuclear attack and counter any attempt to retaliate.

Thousands of workers on strike at Freeport mine in Papua

By Oscar Grenfell, 31 May 2017

The industrial action at the second-largest copper mine in the world reflects mounting social unrest in Indonesia.

Japanese government pushes “anti-conspiracy” laws through lower house

By Gary Alvernia, 30 May 2017

Defying public opposition, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is pushing ahead with the bill that defines 277 types of crimes to which criminal conspiracy can apply.

North Korea tests missile as US deploys third aircraft carrier

By James Cogan, 29 May 2017

The test follow steps by the US and its allies that would have heightened fears in the North Korean regime of the possibility of attack.

Over 150 dead and half a million displaced in Sri Lankan floods

By our correspondents, 29 May 2017

While flooding and landslides are annual events, successive governments have failed to develop any serious mitigation measures or emergency responses.

War clouds over South Asia

By Keith Jones, 27 May 2017

South Asia is becoming more and more geo-politically polarized between an India allied with US imperialism and a Pakistan backed by Beijing.

Sri Lanka: SEP holds meeting and picket in Hatton for release of Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 27 May 2017

Plantation workers, youth and housewives from Hatton and plantation estates participated in the SEP campaign.

Political tensions in Indonesia after jailing of Jakarta governor

By John Roberts, 27 May 2017

Basuki has withdrawn an appeal over his jail sentence in line with ruling elite concerns about possible unrest generated by intense social divisions.

US warship carries out “freedom of navigation” exercise in Chinese-claimed waters

By James Cogan, 26 May 2017

China’s foreign ministry said the move “undermined China’s sovereignty and security,” and risked causing “unexpected air and sea accidents.”

Moody’s downgrades China’s debt rating

By Nick Beams, 26 May 2017

The sharp reaction of the Chinese finance ministry to the Moody’s downgrade decision signifies that that economic and political contradictions facing the Xi Jinping regime are increasing.

Indian establishment lauds military’s use of Kashmiri youth as “human shield”

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 24 May 2017

Predictably the military’s announcement that it would convene a court of inquiry to investigate the incident has proven to be a cruel joke.

Sri Lankan plantation unions embrace Indian prime minister

By R. Shreeharan, 23 May 2017

The Sri Lankan government spent about 20 million rupees on buses and other expenses to transport workers from the central hills plantations to a meeting with Modi.

UN Security Council to meet again after North Korea missile test

By James Cogan, 22 May 2017

The test followed actions by the US and its allies that would only have heightened the North Korean regime’s fears about an imminent military assault.

Another undercover report of super-exploitation in China’s iPhone factories

By Robert Campion, 22 May 2017

A student exposes some of the horrendous working conditions enforced by the Beijing regime, on behalf of conglomerates such as Apple.

Japanese government exploits Korean crisis to whip up war scares

By Gary Alvernia, 20 May 2017

Post-war Japanese governments have attempted for decades to find ways around the limitations on military force in the constitution.

Indian prime minister visits Sri Lanka to strengthen ties

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 19 May 2017

Modi arrived after India and the US expressed concerns about the Colombo government’s economic ties with Beijing.

North Korea accused of cyber attacks in mounting demonisation campaign

By James Cogan, 18 May 2017

A propaganda campaign is underway in the US and international media that is ominously reminiscent of the 2002-2003 hysteria over Iraq and “weapons of mass destruction.”

The frame-up of the Maruti Suzuki workers—Part 5: Judge Goyal mangles the law to sustain the legal vendetta

By Eric London and Keith Jones, 18 May 2017

Far from constituting a blow for justice, the court’s exoneration of 117 of the accused workers was a maneuver aimed at sustaining the legal vendetta against the principal accused—the leaders of the Maruti Suzuki Workers Union.

Sri Lanka: IMF orders government to speed up austerity measures

By Saman Gunadasa, 17 May 2017

The IMF has delayed a scheduled loan payment until the Sirisena-Wickremesinghe government fully implements the bank’s austerity demands.

China hosts international launch of One Belt, One Road initiative

By Nick Beams, 16 May 2017

In launching the initiative, Chinese president Xi Jinping emphasised the need for “win-win co-operation,” but there are significant tensions surrounding the project.

India intensifies repression in Kashmir

By Kranti Kumara and Wasantha Rupasinghe, 16 May 2017

India’s former National Security Advisor has warned that the ruling elite has lost control of the situation in Kashmir, with unarmed youth repeatedly risking their lives to impede security operations.

US, South Korea emphasise alliance after North Korean missile test

By Ben McGrath, 15 May 2017

Concerns persist in Washington that the new Moon administration in Seoul could undermine attempts to pressure Pyongyang.

Burmese government rejects international inquiry into anti-Rohingya pogrom

By John Roberts, 15 May 2017

Suu Kyi’s rejection of any scrutiny of the treatment of the Rohingya minority points to the geopolitical interests that govern relations between Burma and the West.

India: ICFI supporters hold May Day meeting in Bangalore

By our correspondents, 12 May 2017

The event was part of the Trotskyist movement’s commemoration of the centenary of the October 1917 Revolution.

Sri Lankan prime minister strengthens ties with US allies

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 11 May 2017

Despite seeking Chinese investment, the government remains committed to the provocative US-led military build-up in the region.

Democrat Moon Jae-in wins South Korean presidential election

By Ben McGrath, 10 May 2017

Backed by sections of the ruling class, Moon’s election is aimed at defusing widespread concern over social inequality and war, and blocking any movement against the profit system.

SEP (Sri Lanka) calls for workers’ inquiry into Meethotamulla garbage dump disaster

By the Socialist Equality Party, 9 May 2017

The Socialist Equality Party will initiate an independent working class investigation into the April 14 catastrophe that killed 32 people and displaced over 150 families.

South Korean presidential frontrunner stresses agreement with Trump

By Ben McGrath, 8 May 2017

On the eve of South Korea’s election, DPK candidate Moon Jae-in is attempting to placate fears in Washington that he will cut across war plans in the region.

Japanese PM plans to remove constitutional shackles on the military by 2020

By Peter Symonds, 8 May 2017

Abe is seeking to modify Article 9 of Japan’s constitution, which nominally renounces war as a means of settling international disputes and vows never to maintain military forces.

US show of force intensifies pressure on North Korea and China

By Mike Head, 5 May 2017

Two military displays in two days have escalated the tensions on the Korean Peninsula produced by the Trump administration’s threats of military action.

“There is an air of worker rebellion in India and China”

A conversation with Professor Immanuel Ness on the Maruti Suzuki workers

By Jerry White, 4 May 2017

Brooklyn College Professor Immanuel Ness, who has written extensively on the class struggle in India, was part of a team that investigated the persecution of the Maruti Suzuki workers.

SEP Sri Lankan May Day meeting discusses threat of world war and lessons of Russian Revolution

By our correspondents, 4 May 2017

The central theme of the Colombo meeting was the struggle to mobilise the working class on the basis of socialist internationalism against the drive to war.

US sends B-1 strategic bombers over South Korea

By Peter Symonds, 3 May 2017

The US military build-up has raised tensions on the Korean Peninsula to fever pitch, threatening to trigger a devastating conflict.

May Day 2017

Defend the 13 framed-up Indian Maruti Suzuki workers

By Keith Jones, 3 May 2017

The Maruti Suzuki workers have been framed-up and sentenced to life imprisonment through a conspiracy between the company, the police, the courts and India’s main parties.

Trump suggests talks while preparing for war with North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 2 May 2017

Trump’s offer to meet Kim Jong-un is effectively an ultimatum: accept US terms for negotiations or confront the prospect of war.

South Korean election candidates back US war preparations

By Ben McGrath, 2 May 2017

Widespread opposition to the THAAD antiballistic missile battery and the drive to war can find no expression in the presidential contest.

Trump invites Philippine President Duterte to the White House

By Joseph Santolan, 2 May 2017

As part of the advanced preparations for war with North Korea, Trump has called the Philippine president with an invitation for a state visit to Washington.

May Day 2017

The fight for international socialism in South Asia

By Wije Dias, 2 May 2017

The region is caught up in the whirlpool of geo-political tensions produced by the drive towards another imperialist war, amid rising class struggle.

Sri Lanka: Jaffna picket demands release of framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 1 May 2017

Jaffna workers, youth, fishermen and housewives joined an SEP/IYSSE picket and public meeting to protest the witch-hunt and jailing of Indian autoworkers.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

29 April 2017

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

Trump threatens “major conflict” with North Korea

By Mike Head, 28 April 2017

The US president invoked the danger of war, while claiming to be seeking a diplomatic solution to the Korean crisis.

Sri Lanka SEP holds picket in Jaffna to free Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 28 April 2017

Despite the anti-democratic intervention of student union leaders, most Jaffna University students supported the campaign.

White House briefing signals escalating war preparations against North Korea

By Mike Head, 27 April 2017

Comments by senators after the briefing ranged from support for military action against North Korea to pushing for a harder line against China.

Tamil workers in northern Sri Lanka support Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 27 April 2017

Residents in the small town of Chavakachcheri, near Jaffna, said social conditions for Tamil workers were like those confronting the persecuted autoworkers in India.

US tests missile in Pacific as it escalates threats to North Korea

By Mike Head, 26 April 2017

The provocatively-timed US test again underscores where the real risk of nuclear war resides—in Washington.

South Korean presidential candidates move further to the right on North Korea

By Ben McGrath, 26 April 2017

Moon Jae-in of the DPK has sought to prove his pro-US credentials by calling for an additional military buildup.

The frame-up of the Maruti Suzuki workers—Part 4: The police and company conspire against the workers

By Eric London and Keith Jones, 26 April 2017

Police colluded with Maruti Suzuki, fabricated evidence, and systematically failed to carry out basic forensic tests as part of a bogus investigation aimed at framing up militant workers who challenged sweatshop conditions.

US naval “armada” menaces North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 25 April 2017

The nuclear-powered submarine, the USS Michigan, is due to arrive in South Korea today where it will be joined by the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and its strike group.

Sri Lankan government seeks to suppress garbage disaster protests

By Wasantha Rupasinghe, 25 April 2017

The move to outlaw protests against garbage dumps has broader implications for all basic democratic rights.

Modi’s “Make in India” campaign and the battle of the Maruti Suzuki workers

By Pradeep Ramanayake, 25 April 2017

In arguing for the hanging of the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers, the prosecution denounced the workers for imperiling the Modi government’s efforts to woo profit-hungry investors.

Pence’s Asian tour reinforces US threats to North Korea

By Mike Head, 24 April 2017

Without any public consultation, the US and its allies are placing millions of people at risk of a devastating nuclear war.

Tense standoff continues on Korean peninsula

By Peter Symonds, 22 April 2017

The media is fueling tensions with speculation that North Korea could conduct a nuclear or missile test to mark its Military Foundation Day next Tuesday.

Sri Lanka: Jaffna residents demand release of Maruti Suzuki workers

By our correspondents, 22 April 2017

A picket and meeting in Jaffna next week will demand the release of the imprisoned Indian autoworkers.

Workers Struggles: Asia, Australia and the Pacific

22 April 2017

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

ICFI supporters in India call meeting on “World War and the Russian Revolution”

22 April 2017

Speakers will explain that the only way to prevent another world war is the mobilisation of Indian workers as a part of an international anti-war movement.

US government and media ratchet up threats to North Korea

By Mike Head, 21 April 2017

The Trump administration’s ultimatums are intensifying the risk that miscalculations could trigger a conflict that would endanger the lives of millions of people.

Indian elite hails US bombings in Syria and Afghanistan

By Deepal Jayasekera, 21 April 2017

Leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janatha Party and the opposition Congress Party support the US military attacks.

US vice president warns North Korea “the sword is ready”

By Peter Symonds, 20 April 2017

Pence threatened “an overwhelming and effective American response” to any North Korean use of conventional or nuclear weapons.

Incumbent Jakarta governor defeated in bitter electoral contest

By John Roberts, 20 April 2017

A virulent chauvinist campaign against Governor Basuki was a means of diverting the rising unrest generated by the pro-business program that he shares with President Widodo.

US continues dangerous brinkmanship with North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 19 April 2017

By keeping the world guessing as to what he will do, Trump has added a great deal of uncertainty into an already precarious situation and heightened the danger of conflict.

Indian bus workers strike against privatisation

By Arun Kumar, 19 April 2017

The Haryana bus stoppage underscored the intensifying class tensions across the state and India as a whole.

India strengthens defence ties with Bangladesh

By Sarath Kumara, 18 April 2017

The Indian government, in line with US geo-strategic manoeuvres, is attempting to reduce Bangladesh’s military and economic reliance on China.

Sri Lankan government sponsors a sham celebration of the Russian Revolution

By Vijith Samarasinghe, 15 April 2017

The event was a congregation of right-wing politicians, pseudo-lefts and anti-Marxist representatives of academia who are deeply hostile to the heritage of the Russian Revolution.

US media reports Trump preparing “preemptive strike” on North Korea

By James Cogan, 14 April 2017

The pretext for a US attack would be to prevent Pyongyang from carrying out another nuclear weapons’ test.

The Coming War on China: A pacifist appeal

By Richard Phillips, 14 April 2017

Pilger’s documentary exposes something of Washington’s escalating war plans against China but suggests that protests can prevent a nuclear conflagration.

Australian prime minister visits India to boost strategic ties

By Mike Head, 13 April 2017

The outcomes were in line with the ongoing push by Washington for US allies throughout the region to strengthen their military relations with each other.

Sri Lankan artists express solidarity with the framed-up Maruti Suzuki workers

By our reporters, 13 April 2017

A number of Sri Lankan artists have sent statements to the World Socialist Web Site  calling for the release of jailed Maruti Suzuki workers in India.

“It is a frame-up and war on the working class”

Support grows for Maruti Suzuki workers

By our reporters, 13 April 2017

It has been nearly a month since an Indian judge condemned 13 autoworkers to life imprisonment.

Australia’s role in US plans for war on North Korea

By James Cogan, 12 April 2017

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has publicly endorsed Washington’s bellicose rhetoric against the Pyongyang regime.

Trump threatens North Korea, issues ultimatum to China

By Peter Symonds, 12 April 2017

Trump is preparing to attack North Korea if China fails to heed his dictates and Pyongyang conducts another nuclear or missile test.

South Korean presidential candidates line up behind US war drive

By Ben McGrath, 12 April 2017

As tensions with North Korea rise, the leading “democratic” contenders, Moon Jae-in and Ahn Cheol-soo, have taken a pro-militarist and pro-US stance.

Indian ICFI supporters to picket for release of Maruti Suzuki workers

12 April 2017

Workers in Sriperumbudur, Oragadam and other Special Economic Zones should join the April 17 protest and fight for the immediate freeing of the framed-up autoworkers.

China fears US military attack on North Korea

By Peter Symonds, 11 April 2017

The state-owned Global Times warned that “a military strike on the North will very likely evolve into large-scale bloody war on the Peninsula.”