Asia Pacific Currents-logo

Asia Pacific Currents

Asian Talk >

Stories and issues from the Asia Pacific region with a labour and grassroots perspective. Regular interviews with activists from countries in the Asia Pacific region. Produced by Australia-Asia Worker Links.

Stories and issues from the Asia Pacific region with a labour and grassroots perspective. Regular interviews with activists from countries in the Asia Pacific region. Produced by Australia-Asia Worker Links.
More Information


South Carlton, VIC


Stories and issues from the Asia Pacific region with a labour and grassroots perspective. Regular interviews with activists from countries in the Asia Pacific region. Produced by Australia-Asia Worker Links.






PO Box 45 South Carlton, VIC 3053 Australia +61 3 9663 7277


The Great Return March

Israeli troops killed at least 15 Palestinians and injured more than 1,400 on Friday 30 March, during demonstrations along Gaza’s border and in cities throughout the Palestinian enclave. The demonstrations were scheduled to take place for six weeks along the border of Gaza, and have been called the “Great Return March”. This area has been subject to an 11 year illegal blockade by Israel and Egypt. The demonstrations were planned to continue until May 15, the 70th anniversary of the...


The struggle for refugee rights in Australia continues

Due to ongoing economic and political crisis around the world, the number of asylum seekers and refugees continues to grow.Successive Australian governments have been at the forefront internationally in devising and implementing increasingly repressive and harsher policies against ayslum seekers and refugees.We talk to Umesh Perinpanayagam, from the Tamil Refugee Council, about the situation for Tamil refugees in Australia and the ongoing political fight for the rights of all asylum...


Women continue to unite internationally

The origins of International Women's Day are to be found in the working class struggles of working women in the late 19th century.Over 100 hundreds years later, while there has been much progress, there are still many areas before women achieve equality.We listen to two short speeches by Kim Bullimore and Dita Nur at this year's Melbourne IWD rally on how women's liberation is part of other working class struggles against oppression, repression and inequality.Asia Pacific Currents provides...


The reasons behind anti Muslim pogroms in Sri Lanka

After the victory of the Sri Lankan government over the Tamil Tigers in 2009, many working class Sri Lankans expected that the 'peace dividend' was going to lead to an improvement in their lives.Unfortunately this has not proved the case with corruption, repression and inequality still prevalent in the country. Ethnic and communal issues are also being stoked up by powerful sections of the ruling class and far right groups like the far-right Buddhist group Bodu Bala Sena (Buddhist Power...


Massacres by government forces in Syria continue

The uprising against the government of Syria, headed by the dictatorship of Bashar Hafez al-Assad, began in 2011 as part of the broader Arab Spring that saw millions of people rise up in North Africa and West Asia against repression, exploitation and corruption.The Syrian government responded by shooting at the civilian demonstrators. This militarised the conflict and soon various regional and imperialist powers got involved in a bid to squash the uprising and gain influence.After 7 years,...


The continuing importance of International Women's Day

International Women's Day (IWD) has a history going back to the early 20th century when urbanised and working class workers started to organise and demand their rights.While there has been a lot of progress in the last century, much remains to be done, especially for working class women in poorer countries. We speak to Jiselle Hanna, one of the main organisers of the IWD rally in Melbourne, Australia, about the demands of IWD and the central role of working class women in advocating and...


Invasion Day - Resistance to colonisation in Australia

The first officially recorded protest by Aboriginal people against Australia Day, the day that commemorates the United Kingdom colonisation of the Australian landmass, occurred in 1938 in conjunction with the 150th year celebrations.Aboriginal people have continued to resist and protest against this day as it symbolises colonialisation, invasion and dispossession. They have renamed it 'Invasion Day'.This year, the Invasion Day protests were the biggest in recent years, with the one in...

New port company attacks workers in PNG and beyond

With the continued globalisation of the economy, companies all around the world are expanding their operations in many different countries.In the last few years, a Filipino based company, International Container Terminal Services Inc. (ICTSI), has aggressively undertaken to expand in the Australasian region to become a major global company in the maritime industry.ICTSI has a strong anti union stance looking to establish union free, or at least company union, workplaces. We talk to Katie...


Iranian workers mass protests undermine governments authority

Welcome to the first program of APC of 2018.The explosion of working class protests in Iran in late December 2017 caught many people by surprise. The reality thought has been that inequality and poverty have been increasing in Iran for many years.Even though independent unions are not allowed and labour protests are often heavily repressed, Iranian workers have continued to organise and demand better working conditions and a right to organise.We interview Bahman Yusufi, an Iranian labour...


Electronics workers take on company for the right to organise

Export processing zones are used by countries around the world as areas of extremely cheap labour for companies to use as union organising is severely repressed.Hundreds of mainly women workers in the Cavite Export Processing Zone just north of Manila, The Philippines, have gone out on strike in protest at the dismissal of union organiser at their factory.We talk to Arnel, spokesperson of the Labor Party of the Philippines, on the dispute at the Lakepower Converter electronics factory and...


South Korean metro workers taking action against global company

Workers in South Korea have managed to overcome the offensives against them in the last few years from governments and companies.Nevertheless, even after ousting the former President Park, they face many hurdles in improving their wages and conditions.This week we talk to Wolsan Liem, Director of International and Korean Peninsula Affairs of the Korean Public Service and Transport Workers' Union (KPTU), about the strike by Seoul metro workers and the issues that they are facing.Asia...


Gas workers in south eastern Australia still fighting after five months

The large gas and oil sectors in Australia are dominated by global companies. In the last few years, they have launched an offensive against workers in Australia to slash wages and conditions.Longford in the south eastern Australian state of Victoria is the latest flashpoint of this battle. Esso is trying to force its maintenance workers to be employed by a shelf company which would pay them up to 40% less in wages and introduce brutal shifts that would see workers working up to 4 weeks...


South Korean workers fighting for their rights

The labour movement in South Korea is one of the strongest in the Asia Pacific region with its roots in the anti dictatorship protests of the 1960's and 1970's.In the last few years it has come under sustained attack from successive Government administrations. Its Secretary, Han Sang-gyun is still currently in jail for the crime of organising demonstrations.We talk to Mikyung Ryu, the International Relation Director of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU), about the latest...


Fighting against trade union repression

Workers all around the world face pressures and repression as capitalists try to increase their profits by spending less on workers welfare and making them work faster, longer and harder for less pay.The Global Day to stop the repression against unionists was initiated in 2014 as a joint project by a number of labour organisations in the Asia Pacific region. This Day is to support workers rights, to call for the end of repression against our brothers and sisters, and to stand together...


Demonetisation, economic reforms and workers protests in India

The current BJP Government in India, headed by Prime Minister Modi, has been in power for over three years.His government has been one of the most pro business governments in Indian history. Modi has set our to free up the hand of capitalists in India while at the same time undermining the power of workers to organise. The demonetisation program that was unveiled last year has only worsened conditions for many workers.We talk to Vusudevan Nambiath, labour leader with the New Trade Union...


Fight against Australia's inhumane refugee policies continue

Since 1989, the Australian Government's policies and actions against asylum seekers and refugees have increasingly become xenophobic, nationalist and repressive.On top of turning back boats in acts of piracy on the high seas, deporting refugees back to dangers in countries they escaped from, Australia has created a series of concentration camps for refugees both onshore and offshore.Currently, the camp at Manus Island is closing, leaving hundreds of refugees in a desperate situation. We...


Setbacks and advances for the Kurdish struggle in West Asia

While the wars in Iraq and Syria have offered a historical opportunity for Kurdish forces to advance their right to autonomy and independence, there are also major dangers.The recent advances by Kurdish forces in northern Syria in taking Raqqa and their capitulation and losses in northern Iraq examplify the difficulties and uneven situation that Kurdish groups face in West Asia.We talk to Mahmut Kahraman, spokesperson for the Kurdish Democratic Community Centre of Victoria, Australia, on...


Will Palestine unity help the struggle?

Last week, the two biggest Palestinian political factions, announced that they signed an initial unity agreement. This deal was announced by both sides as a ‘a declaration of the end to division and a return to national Palestinian unity’.While this is a positive steps, there are many big issues to resolve between the two organisations, including the ongoing occupation, a crackdown on independent Palestinian media and the repression and jailing of Palestinian activists by Israel.We...

Streets ice cream workers battle global giant

Around 150 workers in the Australian city of Sydney have been in a brutal struggle from last August against their employer, Streets Ice Cream, a subsidiary of the global giant Unilever, over a new enterprise agreement. The company wants to reduce workers’ wages by over 40%, as well as cuts to overtime and redundancy payments.Matt Kunkel from 3CR Radio's Stick Together program interviews Steve Murphy, the NSW Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) State Secretary, on the workers...


Documenting the unfolding disaster of the Rohingya people

While the Rohingya people in Western Burma have suffered discrimination in the past, the current disaster is of unprecedented proportions.We talk to Mahi Ramakrishnan, a blogger and documentary film maker from Malaysia, who has made three documentaries about the Rohingya people about the current campaign of ethnic cleansing by the Myanmar Government.Mahi also talks about some of the possible ways forward to resolve this humanitarian and political crisis.Asia Pacific Currents provides...


Try Premium for 30 days

Live games for all NFL, MLB, NBA, & NHL teams
Commercial-Free Music
No Display Ads