A coalition of activists in the USA are preparing for protests against Urban Shield, a police training event and trade expo. Urban Shield brings together police departments from across the US and globally for intensive training " to learn how to better repress, criminalize, and militarize our communities." The event has been held annually in Alameda County since 2007, and recieves government funding.
Activists and organisers from the Boycott, Divest and Sanction (BDS) Campaign in South Africa have announced an end to the two year long #BoycottWoolworths campaign. The #BoycottWoolworths campaign was launched in August 2014 by a wide cross section of groups, and called for the complete boycott of Woolworths due to its Israeli trade relations. The organisers believe the campaign has achieved several goals, and have announced the end of the blanket boycott of Woolworths to broaden the campaign to now target all Israeli products in any store in South Africa.
War Profiteers News is published by War Resisters' International, a network of activists and activist organisations. We want our newsletters to reflect the work of those reading them, sharing stories and ideas from our network and friends. We don't just bemoan the state of the world as it is, we actively try to change it. We hope our newsletters highlight the work being done by activists around the world. We welcome work by seasoned writer-activists, and those telling their story for the first time.
This article was originally published in the May edition of The Broken Rifle, the main magazine of War Resisters' International.
Samantha Hargreaves from WoMin - an African gender and extractives alliance - speaks to Andrew Dey from WRI about the links between gender, extractive industries and militarism in Africa, and what this new network is doing to counter it.
Tell us about your work – what is Womin, when did you form, and who makes up your network? What are the critical issues you are working on?
Samantha: WoMin was launched in October 2013. We work with about 50 allied organisations in fourteen countries across Southern, East and West Africa. Most partners are working on issues of land, natural resources, extractive industries, environmental and climate justice and women’s rights. Our work with women rights organisations has generally been challenged by their focus to more 'traditional' gender issues like violence against women, women and girl child education and health, with a small number working on the terrain of environment, land and other economic justice questions.
WoMin Southern African women and coal exchange. Photo: Heidi Augestad
Activists in Melbourne erected a giant tripod with a climber hanging from it, to blockade a Wilson Security car park at Melbourne Convention Centre. The blockade delayed the start of the prestigious Security Exhibition and Conference being held in the centre, at which government representatives and members of ASIO, AFP and Border Force will be in attendance. In Sydney refugee activists also shut down Wilson Security Circular Quay car park in solidarity with the Melbourne convention blockade and refugees imprisoned on Manus Island and Nauru.
Ferrovial is a Spanish multinational company, with a broad range of interests - they are involved in the construction of the Gugenheim Museum in Bilbao, the construction of the M3 motorway in Ireland, and manage toll roads across Europe. Ferrovial owns 90% of the company Broadspectrum, which runs Australia's offshore immigration detention centres in Papua New Guinea.