Year 2000 No. 173, October 16, 2000
Workers' Daily Internet Edition : Article Index :
Workers Weekly Youth Group Launches Youth and Students Web Page
Dudley Hospital Workers Hold Successful Conference on Fighting PFI
Impressive Progress of North-South Reconciliation Process Following the Inter-Korean Summit in Pyongyang
Call of WPK on its 55th Anniversary
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The Workers Weekly Youth Group has launched its own Youth and Students Web Page. It is accessible through the link on the home page of RCPB(ML).
WDIE hails the establishment of this page, which will be updated on a regular basis and modified and improved as time goes by. The WWYG has resolved to put the full weight of their collective behind this page, which will be developed hand in hand with the Youth and Students Page in Workers Weekly.
New articles just posted include: Governments Curfew Plans Further Criminalise the Youth; Universities Look to Further Measures to Enforce Tuition Fee Payment; International Youth Conference on EU Held in Denmark.
WWYG has issued the following invitation:
The Youth and Students section of Workers Weekly reports on and analyses the conditions of young people and the agenda they are setting themselves to become political and overcome their marginalisation from society. We warmly invite all readers to contribute constructively to the section by sending in their letters, ideas and reports so as to improve its content and extend its readership. To contact the Workers Weekly Youth Group (WWYG), pass your messages via Workers Weekly; Email firstname.lastname@example.org; write to 170 Wandsworth Road, London SW8 2LA; or phone 020 7627 0599.
The conference, held on Saturday, October 7, in Dudley on fighting PFI and privatisation, was successful in attracting over 50 people. It passed the following resolution:
This conference applauds the stand against PFI taken by health workers in Dudley and notes that this is one of the longest running, sustained strikes in the history of the NHS.
This conference believes it is time for every working class person to speak out in defence of the NHS and the principles it was founded on. French workers recently won a series of victories through direct action. A similar campaign of direct action against privatisation and in defence of the NHS would gain the overwhelming support of people in this country.
This conference agrees to:
1. Call on our union leaders to organise a serious campaign of action to defeat PFI. We should not allow one group to be picked off at a time. A united response, up to and including all out strike action, would show the government how determined we are to defeat PFI.
2. Call on our union leaders to conduct a systematic campaign in the West Midlands to maximise the support shown in opinion polls that 80 percent of local people back the strikers. This should start with a day of protest in support of the strike at Dudley at a date during subsequent strike action.
3. Reconvene, at the request of the strikers, to discuss forms of protest and solidarity that could be delivered.
This conference further resolves to ask participants and supporters to:
1. Invite strikers to our area; organising as many meetings as possible to maximise support.
2. Make regular donations to the UNISON Dudley Group of Hospitals strike fund.
3. Push for regular levies/collections inside our organisations.
4. Set up support groups across the country.
5. To help to build future demonstrations called by UNISON Dudley Group of Hospitals.
6. Send letters to Alan Milburn condemning his refusal to intervene to keep the strikers' jobs within the NHS.
7. Circulate this resolution to all appropriate labour movement bodies.
The September 2000 Bulletin of CILRECO, the International Liaison Committee for Reunification and Peace in Korea, carries an article with the above title as its main content. The article reads:
- A TOUCHING SYMBOL OF THE WILL TO ACHIEVE NATIONAL UNITY: ONLY ONE KOREA AT THE OPENING CEREMONY OF TIIE OLYMPIC GAMES IN SYDNEY
We do not doubt that for all friends of the Korean people, and most of all for those who have been working for years with CILRECO in favour of the peaceful and independent reunification of Korea, watching the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Sydney was a moment of intense emotions.
For the first time ever in more than half a century of tragic division of Korea, imposed by foreign forces, the athletes of the North and the South, as a joint delegation, marched together, carrying the flag representing the map of their country but without that dramatic "military demarcation line", the hermetic border that divides it.
A standing ovation of thousands of participants and Olympic executives from different countries given to this joint delegation of Korean athletes shows that they are aware of the importance of this event for the Korean nation, international security and peace.
Throughout the world, millions of viewers certainly shared this feeling, with the impression that these images were a symbol of the will of the Korean people to unite, marked by the important advances in the North-South reconciliation process, resulting from the historic inter-Korean summit held in Pyongyang in June.
- CONCRETE RESULTS OF THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE NORTH-SOUTH ACCORDS
Even though it greatly vexes those who predicted, not without ulterior motives, that the meeting between the two leaders of the North and the South would have no noticeable consequences for the present state of the "Korean problem", one cannot but notice that most of the accords reached during the summit are followed by concrete measures, and that the reconciliation process continues.
Any honest observer of the development of situation in the Korean peninsula cannot but acknowledge the importance of the progress made in the process of reconciliation within these past two months.
These results delight all those who wish for and work in favour of finding a positive solution to the "Korean problem", as much out of solidarity with this nation that has always been the victim of domineering ambitions of American imperialism and the consequences of the "cold war", as out of conviction that this persistent, arbitrary division of Korea creates a potential war zone that has to be eliminated.
How not to rejoice over those particularly touching meetings in Seoul and Pyongyang in August, when one hundred family members met after half a century long separation, as a result of the division of the country and the tragic 1950-1953 Korean war?
How not to be happy about the return to their home country of 63 prisoners of war from the D.P.R.K., those whom all humanitarian and human rights organisations refer to as "long-term prisoners of conscience", because they refused to renounce their convictions and were arbitrarily kept in South Korea despite their old age and poor health?
As far as the political situation is concerned, the climate of dialogue has been established between the North and the South, high level meetings are held to resolve conflicting issues, liaison office reopened in Panmunjom to ensure permanent contact, direct phone line was installed between the two capitals; all these facts show that joint efforts have been made to reduce tension, restore confidence and to advance, in this manner, towards national unity.
Steps are also made on the economic level; decision was made to reconstruct destroyed railway line between Pyongyang and Seoul, and measures taken to develop considerably the inter-Korean exchanges in all domains.
- A PROCESS THAT HELPS TO PROGRESS TOWARDS REUNIFICATION OF THE COUNTRY AND LONG LASTING PEACE IN THE KOREAN PENINSULA
This assessment of our international solidarity movement with the cause of the Korean people is based on the observation that numerous problems, resulting from the arbitrary division of Korea and consequent confrontation between the North and the South, are in process of being resolved thanks to the implementation of the constructive dialogue at the inter-Korea summit in June.
Essentially, CILRECO believes that this process under way helps to make decisive progress insofar as it is based on the three reunification principles: independence, peaceful reunification and national unity, reaffirmed in the first item of the joint declaration issued at the summit between the leaders of the North and the South.
CILRECO's hopes are based on the strong desire of the Korean people to achieve national unity, the desire that has been maintained throughout this half a century long division of the country, all the more so since its intervention, boosted by the progress under way, may very well render the reunification process irreversible.
It is now, more than ever, the responsibility of the international community to ensure that the right of the Korean nation to decide freely and sovereignty on its future is respected, at the time of the development of this positive process, by demanding an end to all foreign interference in the internal affairs of the Korean nation.
- WORK IN FAVOUR OF AN ENORMOUS MOVEMENT OF SUPPORT TO THIS PROCESS UNDER WAY, AND DENOUNCE ANY ATTEMPT AIMED AT BLOCKING IT
CILRECO's optimism regarding future prospects for a true solution to the "Korean problem", resulting from this process under way, is not naive, since, during its long years of work in favour of the Korean cause, it could very well assess the determination of the forces hostile to the reunification of the country.
Nobody ignores the place assigned to Korea by the United States within their strategy of political, economic and military domination in this region, in keeping with their aspiration for world-wide hegemony.
If necessary, many officials from the American administration, starting with Mrs. Albright, Secretary of State, were eager to repeat that the question of the presence of the American troops in South Korea "is not debatable", at the time when reconciliation and détente are getting established in the Korean peninsula.
CILRECO and many other progressive and peace-loving forces world-wide have proved many times that the presence of the American troops is an essential obstacle to the process of "independent" reunification of the country by all of its components: the North, the South, and the diaspora, and, at the same time, it goes against stability and peace in the region.
Today, when the North and the South take steps to put an end to this persistent dangerous confrontation in Korea, and to build mutual confidence for the benefit of the entire nation, there is no justification whatsoever for the presence of the American troops.
Will the American leaders hear the voice of reason? It is time for them to make their acts consistent with their statements "rejoicing over the process of reconciliation and détente in the Korean peninsula".
The success of the international petition launched by CILRECO at the beginning of this year shows that people "support the Korean nation in its struggle for a peaceful and independent reunification of the country" and they want "the withdrawal of the American troops from South Korea, so that the Korean nation could sovereignly decide on its future, and so that long-lasting peace could be ensured in the Korean peninsula, which is a factor of international security ".
Therefore, CILRECO calls on all progressive and peace-loving forces and the international community to support and encourage the success of this reconciliation process under way between the North and the South in Korea.
It rejoices over future prospects for reunification and peace in Korea resulting from this process, along the lines of the fundamental principle that its action of solidarity has always been guided by:
"It is up to Koreans themselves to decide on the problem of reunification and to define the ways and means to achieve it."
The 55th anniversary of the Workers Party of Korea fell on October 10. It was celebrated in the DPRK as a proud festival of victors, who have overcome the recent difficulties of the "arduous march" and forced march, under the leadership of the great Kim Jong Il. The founding of the WPK was an historic event which brought about a fundamental turning point in the Korean revolution. Since its founding, the Party has traversed a proud, victorious and glorious road in the interests of the revolution, the country and the Korean nation. It has over the last 55 years proudly led the revolutionary trend of history in the DPRK, in the spirit of self-reliance and putting the dignity of the country and the nation on the highest level.
It was the great leader Kim Il Sung who laid the foundations of the Party, leading it in building it as a revolutionary Party and solving the concrete problems of the Korean revolution. The leadership has now entered a new phase of its development in the person of Kim Jong Il, a distinguished leader and thinker. Kim Jong Il has strengthened and developed the WPK strictly adhering to the line laid down by Kim Il Sung in this present era of the revolution.
In our issue of October 10, we reported on the meeting commemorating the founding of the WPK organised by the Korean Friendship and Solidarity Campaign, at which the delegation of the CC of RCPB(ML) which visited the DPRK to the background of the anniversary presented its report on the successful visit. In this issue of WDIE, we focus on the call of the Central Committee of the WPK, made in the run up to the 55th annivesary, to the whole party, the whole army and all the people to make the anniversary of the party a year of general advance for the building of a powerful nation and a proud year of victory.
The WPK highlights the importance of building a powerful socialist country and carrying to completion the revolutionary cause under the guidance of the great Kim Jong Il. It underscores the need to develop the WPK into a revolutionary party of Juche guided by General Secretary Kim Jong Il's great revolutionary ideas, leadership traits and noble virtues.
The call of the Central Committee lays particular stress on the adherence to the WPK line of attaching great importance to ideology, arms, and science and technology.
It appeals to all the party members and other working people to adhere to the WPK policies of arming all the people and fortifying the whole country so as to consolidate the all-people, nation-wide defence system.
It highlights the importance of firmly defending socialism of Korean style, the most precious gains of the Korean revolution, and fully displaying its advantages.
It lays emphasis on the need to increase the independent and self-reliant character of the economy of the DPRK so as to give full play to the potential of an independent national economy and to concentrate on the power industry, coal industry, agriculture, railway transport and metal industry.
It appeals to the whole party, the whole army and all the people to better carry out farming in vigorous response to the agriculture-first policy of the WPK, laying particular emphasis on the need to carry through the party policy of bringing about innovations in potato farming so as to solve the food problem.
It appeals to the party members and other working people in the field of light industry to increase production and aim high through a drive to bring about innovations in light industry and turn out more primary consumer goods which the people badly need.
Referring to the task to successfully materialise Kim Jong Il's idea of attaching great importance to science and technology, the call underscores the need to rapidly develop electronics, bio-engineering and other up-to-the-minute science and technology and direct efforts to the development of electronics and automation industries and computer industry so as to build modern industries of the 21st century.
Describing the advance for the building of a powerful nation as the advance of self-reliance, the call reads as follows: "Let us build a powerful nation by our own efforts and resources under the uplifted banner of self-reliance. Let us boost the economy and improve the people's living standards our own way relying on on our economic foundations."
The call of the CC also stresses the need to make 2000, the 55th anniversary of Korea's liberation, a year of a new historic turn in the struggle for national reunification and to adhere to the three-point charter of national reunification and the five-point policy of great national unity so as to strengthen solidarity among the people in the north, south and abroad.
Urging the implementation of the historic north-south joint declaration, it appeals to the whole nation to achieve the independent and peaceful reunification of the country at an early date by its concerted efforts.
The call also stresses the importance to adhere to the avowed conception of the WPK's foreign policy, the keynote of which is independence, peace and friendship. The Korean people should unite firmly with the world people aspiring after independence and defend socialism and dynamically advance the human cause of independence, the call says.
It stresses the need to decisively smash the imperialists' moves for "globalisation" and their highhanded, arbitrary and hegemonic practices and build a new international order based on justice, equality and impartiality.
It also lays stress on further strengthening the non-aligned movement, under the banner of independence, against imperialism and developing friendly and co-operative relations with all countries which respect the sovereignty of the DPRK.
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