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  • Writer's pictureMichael Laxer

CPC's 20th Congress begins: Red Review #77 -- International Left and Labour News

With news from the USA, UK, France, the DPRK and elsewhere. There is also a section with updates from the opening of the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China.

Xi Jinping addresses the opening of the 20th Congress of the Communist Party of China, October 16, 2022

October 12:

France on Wednesday ordered some staff at an Exxon Mobil fuel depot back to work and warned a TotalEnergies depot could be next, risking a wider conflict with trade unions as it battles to secure petrol supplies after weeks of strikes.

The French energy ministry said it was requisitioning some staff at the Gravenchon-Port Jerome depot run by Exxon's Esso France business, where the hardline CGT remains on strike despite a pay deal with other unions.

President Emmanuel Macron said further requisitioning proceedings will take place if the labour dispute is not being solved through dialogue "within the next hours", adding one in three petrol stations in the country still lacked sufficient supplies.

October 13:

Major Palestinian groups have agreed to try and end their years-long disagreements and form a united National Council in order to put up a joint fight against the Israeli occupation. The reconciliation deal was reached in the Algerian capital Algiers on Thursday, October 13. Major groups that signed the “Algerian declaration” include Fatah, Hamas, and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).

The deal was reached after two days of talks under the mediation of the Algerian government. In total, the deal was signed by leaders of 14 Palestinian factions, including Azzam al-Ahmad from Fatah, Ismail Haniyeh from Hamas, and PFLP Secretary General Talal Naji. Other factions that signed the deal include the Palestinian National Initiative (PNI) and the Palestinian People’s Party (PPP).

The reconciliation deal calls for all factions to resolve their differences and disputes by holding legislative and presidential elections in all occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, within a year. It recognizes the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) as the sole representative of the Palestinian people and calls for the formation of its National Council with representatives of all the signatories to the agreement within a year.

Mangyongdae Revolutionary School and Kang Pan Sok Revolutionary School have significantly marked the 75th anniversaries of their founding. They have become established as the seat for education of children of revolutionary martyrs and as the base for training the backbones of our revolution decade after decade and century after century under the care of the great Party injecting eternal vitality to the lifeline of the Juche revolution that started on Mt Paektu.

Along the course of their development associated with the noble revolutionary obligation of and outlook on the future generations of the peerlessly great men, the schools have brought up a large contingent of the indomitable revolutionaries and patriotic loyalists firmly inheriting the lineage of Mangyongdae and Paektu to promote the growth of our Party, state and revolutionary armed forces, and consolidated the cornerstone guaranteeing the eternity of the country and the revolution. This is a proud review of the long history of the schools.

A grand commemoration ceremony took place at Mangyongdae Revolutionary School Wednesday.

Educators unions organized a massive demonstration in the Wallonian city of Namur in Belgium on Thursday, October 13, seeking better working conditions. The march was called by educators’ unions affiliated to the General Labor Federation of Belgium (FGTB/ABVV), Confederation of Christian Trade Unions (ACV/CSC), General Confederation of Liberal Trade Unions of Belgium (ACLVB/CGSLB), SECTa, and SLFP, among others. Around 13,000 people participated in the march protesting the insensitivity of the government and the Wallonia-Brussels Federation toward the pressing needs of educators. Political parties like the Workers Party of Belgium (PTB/PVDA) and the Communist Party of Belgium (PCB/CPB) expressed solidarity and support with the mobilization.

Teachers and their unions across Belgium have been demanding smaller class rooms, lighter workloads, relaxation from non-academic work, more investments, and recruitment in the sector. Teachers are also protesting against the faulty staff evaluation system proposed in the ‘Pact For Excellence in Teaching’ which tends to result in job losses and elimination of support resources. On September 27, unions organized a demonstration in front of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation in Brussels raising the same demands. With the onset of winter amid an acute fuel shortage, the teaching community as well as students are anxious about the possibility of conducting classes inside classrooms without adequate heating.

Officials of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) and the Japanese Communist Party (JCP) convened their 10th theoretical exchange workshop in Tokyo on October 13.

The event was co-chaired by Politburo member, Chairman of the Central Theory Council and President of the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics Nguyen Xuan Thang; and Standing Member of the JCP Presidium and Deputy Head of the JCP Central Committee’s Secretariat, Tanaka Yu.

The two sides delved into the development of real socialism in the 21st century, while exchanging their views and experience on socialism building.

Sir Keir Starmer’s best friend at the moment is Prime Minister Liz Truss and the Conservative Government, Len McCluskey has told GB News.

Mr McCluskey, a former trade union chief, said he met Sir Keir, alongside other members of the Labour party, to attempt to come to an agreement after former leader Jeremy Corbyn was suspended from the party in October 2020.

But after all parties agreed to a statement which would see Mr Corbyn reinstated, Sir Keir opted to withdraw his whip.

As a result, Mr McCluskey said he has lost all trust for the Labour leader, describing him as a liar.

The World Federation of Trade Unions, representing 105 million workers in 130 countries around the world, expresses its support for the strikers in the refineries of France and for the FNIC CGT, affiliated to the WFTU, which has been leading this heroic struggle for 3 weeks against the big monopolies Total and Exxon mobile.

Refinery workers in France are waging a powerful and exemplary struggle, at a time when these big oil monopolies are paying billions of Euros in dividends to their shareholders, while refusing to raise wages: refiners are showing that only the way of the strike and the struggle can force the employers to satisfy the demands of the workers.

The WFTU condemns the brutal decision of the French government to carry out police requisitions of striking workers to break the strike!

October 14:

Wang Yulin, Director General of Bureau V of the International Liaison Department of the Communist Party of China (CPC) was in Cuba recently to attend a conference being organized by the Communist Party of Cuba (PCC).

The conference was, unfortunately, cancelled due to Hurricane Ian. Before Yulin left Cuba, however, he did an interview with Cuban journalist Bertha Mojena Milian that was published by the PCC on October 14 on its website.

We have translated an excerpt from the interview from the original Spanish.

From healthcare and education to retail and building maintenance, dozens of workers from several different job areas came together Friday for a march. Organizers said it was part of a national movement, with thousands of workers nationwide taking to the streets to demand "unions for all."

"We are the ones who keep the company running," one speaker said. "We are the ones who keep the stores running."

More than 100 workers walked off the job at a San Bernardino Amazon facility Friday – the company’s largest air freight location on the West Coast.

“I’m just fighting for all the employees that feel like the pay is not enough. Honestly, the pay isn’t enough,” said Amazon employee Shaquille Combs.

Nearly two months after another strike at the same facility at the San Bernardino International Airport, organizers with a group called Inland Empire Amazon Workers said their demands still aren’t being heard.

Apple Inc. retail workers at a store in Oklahoma City have voted to unionize, expanding labor's foothold at the world's most valuable company and raising the prospect of further gains in other cities.

October 15:

A POPULAR anti-racism campaigner blocked by Labour from becoming an MP has slammed the ‘factional’ decision taken by officials behind the scenes.

Maurice Mcleod – who was backed by MPs Diane Abbott, Bell Riberio-Addy and John McDonnell – was kicked out of the selection contest in Camberwell and Peckham, a seat with the highest black population in Britain.

October 16:

Over 100,000 workers joined a demonstration in Paris on Sunday—and major French trade unions are preparing for a mass strike on Tuesday. It is a major challenge to the pro-boss government of president Emmanuel Macron.

At the heart of the resistance is a strike by oil refinery workers at Exxon and Total over pay that began on 27 September. It closed more than half of France’s refineries and led to petrol stations running dry in many areas. Workers at several nuclear power stations also struck.

A march including tens of thousands of people in Paris on Sunday represented a "great convergence" of crises facing the French public and President Emmanuel Macron's government, said progressive leader Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the head of the left-wing party France Unbowed and an organizer of the massive protest.

Communist Party of China Congress Highlights:

Xi Jinping called on all members of the Communist Party of China (CPC) to strive in unity to build a modern socialist China in all respects as the 20th CPC National Congress opened Sunday.

The congress takes place at a critical time as the entire Party and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups embark on a new journey to build China into a modern socialist country in all respects and advance toward the Second Centenary Goal, Xi said in a report at the opening session of the congress.

The theme of the congress is holding high the great banner of socialism with Chinese characteristics, fully implementing the Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, carrying forward the great founding spirit of the Party, staying confident and building strength, upholding fundamental principles and breaking new ground, forging ahead with enterprise and fortitude, and striving in unity to build a modern socialist country in all respects and advance the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts, he said.

Since its founding a century ago, the CPC has taken a remarkable journey and dedicated itself to achieving lasting greatness for the Chinese nation and committed itself to the noble cause of peace and development for humanity, Xi said. "Our responsibility is unmatched in importance, and our mission is glorious beyond compare."

"It is imperative that all of us in the Party never forget our original aspiration and founding mission, that we always stay modest, prudent, and hard-working, and that we have the courage and ability to carry on our fight," he said.

The whole Party must remain confident in the history, exhibit greater historical initiative, and write an even more magnificent chapter for socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era, Xi said.

The Communist Party of China (CPC) on Sunday unveiled its blueprint for building a modern socialist China in all respects for the next five years and beyond as the 20th CPC National Congress opened.

The five-yearly meeting is the first national congress of the CPC after its centenary in 2021, when the Party led the Chinese people to finish building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.

“From this day forward, the central task of the CPC will be to lead the Chinese people of all ethnic groups in a concerted effort to realize the Second Centenary Goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects and to advance the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernization,” Xi Jinping said in a report at the opening session of the congress.

He urged all CPC members to never forget the original aspiration and founding mission and to have the courage and ability to carry on the fight.

The 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China convened in Beijing on Sunday. In the report Xi Jinping delivered at the opening session, he objectively summarized the progress of the Party and the nation over the past five years and the past 10 years of the new era, and provided a guideline for their joint development in the foreseeable future.

In doing so, he ushered the country onto the next stage of its journey of rejuvenation, setting the country's sights firmly on the goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects.

Over the past decade, under the leadership of the CPC Central Committee, with Xi at its core, the nation has stayed united and responded effectively to the momentous challenges it has faced.

At the opening session on Sunday, Xi delivered a report to the 20th CPC National Congress on behalf of the 19th CPC Central Committee.

Xi said: “We embraced the centenary of the Communist Party of China, we ushered in a new era of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and we eradicated absolute poverty and finished building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, thus completing the First Centenary Goal.”

On the missions and tasks of the CPC on the new journey of the new era, Xi said: “From this day forward, the central task of the CPC will be to lead the Chinese people of all ethnic groups in a concerted effort to realize the Second Centenary Goal of building China into a great modern socialist country in all respects and to advance the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernization.”

Xi Jinping said on Sunday that China must strive to build a modern socialist country in all respects under the rule of law.

"We must give better play to the role of the rule of law in consolidating foundations, ensuring stable expectations, and delivering long-term benefits," said Xi at the opening session of the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

The comprehensive advancement of law-based governance has been a profound revolution in China's governance. Law-based governance is important for the Party's success in governing and rejuvenating the country, for the wellbeing of the people, and for the long-term stability of the Party and the country, he said.

"We must follow a path of socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics, develop a Chinese system of socialist rule of law, and establish China as a socialist country under the rule of law," Xi said.

"We must, with a focus on protecting and promoting social fairness and justice, pursue coordinated progress in law-based governance, law-based exercise of state power, and law-based government administration and take integrated steps to build a country, government, and society based on the rule of law," he said.

Xi Jinping on Monday called on all Chinese people to stay united as "a piece of hard steel" under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and pull together with one mind to power the giant ship of national rejuvenation through the wind and waves to reach its destination.

Xi made the remarks when he joined a group discussion with delegates from south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region who are attending the 20th CPC National Congress.

Xi said the 20th CPC National Congress further points out the direction for the development of the Party and the country's cause, and serves as a political declaration and program of action for the Party to unite Chinese people to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics.


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