Socialist Worker

Profits before rights

Issue No. 1670

THE NEW Labour government ordered the police to crack down on protests against Chinese president Jiang Zemin's tour of Britain, according to a source in Blair's cabinet. People who had suffered years of imprisonment in China's jails or were demanding human rights were blocked and manhandled by the Metropolitan Police.

Hypocritically, the Tories and the right wing press claimed they were outraged by Labour's actions. These same people cheered when the police hammered protesters during the miners' strike or at the Welling anti-BNP demo.

New Labour wanted the Chinese president's tour to help businessmen increase their profits. Some £2.2 billion worth of deals with British firms were announced by the Department of Trade and Industry on the second day of Jiang's visit. Among the companies set to profit from Jiang's visit are BP Amoco, NatWest and HSBC banks, and Marconi. On Friday of last week Tony Blair had lunch with Jiang alongside Rupert Murdoch, the union busting boss of News International.

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Sat 30 Oct 1999, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1670
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