Friday, 22 June 2012

Political prisoners in Pakistan : climate change and textile workers

Emergency speakout for jailed Pakistani activists
Free Baba Jan & the Hunza 5!
Political prisoners of the climate change crisis

Wednesday, June 27, 12:30-1:30pm. 
Cnr Bourke & Swanston Sts, Melbourne. 

Baba Jan is a Pakistani activist from a community that has fallen victim to climate change. He is also a victim of the 'War on Terror'. In January 2010 several communities were engulfed by flooding and landslides in the Hunza River valley, in the remote Himalayan Pakistani-administered territory of Gilgit-Baltistan. These floods and landslides were the result of deforestation, soil erosion and climate change.
The lake was formed by a landslide in January 2010

In 2011 Baba Jan, a member of the Labour Party Pakistan, was involved in organising protests demanding compensation for effected communities. Police repression of these protests included the shooting of two villagers (a father and son). 

In the aftermath, Baba Jan and four others were arrested and charged under Pakistan's Anti-Terror Laws. On April 28, Baba Jan was taken from his cell by elite security agencies and has since been subjected to beatings and torture.

Others charged under Pakistan's Anti-Terror Laws include the Faisalabad 6, who led a textile workers' strike, and textile worker unionists in Karachi. The Pakistani state's contribution to the 'War on Terror' also includes disappearing hundreds of civilians in border regions and collaborating with US drone strikes.

This speakout is part of an international week of action. For further background see Urgent appeal for Baba Jan, prisoner of climate change and Pakistan: International week of action for the release of Baba Jan. Sponsored by Socialist Alliance, Industrial Workers of the World (Melbourne), Socialist Alternative. Other endorsements welcome. For more info ph Tony 0437 237 010.

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