Monday, October 29, 2007

Saudi Protest - This Wednesday

Its really good to see an initiative from Socialist Youth Network take off in such a big way. Myself and Owen as co-chairs of SYN were interviewed by the Indie over the weekend and the story is on the front page!

Its also been picked up all over the media from The Sun to the Guardianand even theMiddle Eastern Times not to mention all over the blogosphere with too many links to mention!

The Middle Eastern times story says "On Wednesday, protestors are due to stage a mass human rights demonstration outside the Saudi embassy in London, supported by figures including senior ruling Labour party lawmaker John McDonnell."

:) my we have moved up in the world! On a more serious note it is good to see a wide coalition of people speaking out against the visit, it is disgraceful the hypocritical way that this government are treating Iran in comparison to Saudi. Saudi Arabia is arguably the most repressive society on earth (though that argument is taking place at Osler's blog!)

It has no political parties, no free elections, no independent media or trade unions. Human rights violations are rampant - including the lack of basic rights for women, the repression of gays, the widespread use of torture,amputations and public executions.

Obviously though Abdullah has no worries despite being met by a barrage of protests at his visit, with it seems the only people happy he is here being the Government, he slags them off on BBC News this morning. How to win friends and influence people eh - still I suppose when all the government care about is your oil it doesnt matter what you say about them or how much you abuse people?

I hope to see as many of you as possible on Wednesday 6pm - 8pm Saudi Embassy, 30-32 Charles Street, W1J 5DZ Speakers include: Yahya al-Alfaifi (Saudi trade unionist), Katy ClarkMP, John McDonnell MP, Marsha-Jane Thompson (SYN Co-Chair), SandyMitchell (former British prisoner in Saudi Arabia), Murad Qureshi AM and Peter Tatchell