Southern Europe

At least 35 killed in Italy bridge collapse

By Allison Smith, 15 August 2018

The death toll has reached 35, with at least seven seriously injured and 440 forced to evacuate their homes following a gas leak.

Podemos backs state cover-up in Barcelona terror attack

By Alex Lantier, 9 August 2018

The pseudo-left party is demanding that the Spanish king be allowed to lead this year’s remembrance ceremony.

Portugal: Left Bloc leader resigns over property speculation fortune

By Paul Mitchell, 7 August 2018

The whole episode surrounding Robles reveals, once again, the hypocritical self-seeking nature of the upper middle class constituency that forms the social basis of the pseudo-left.

European Union reduces maritime rescue operations in the Mediterranean

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 26 July 2018

The halting of official rescue operations, like the sabotage of those conducted by private organisations, will lead to a massive rise in fatalities.

Pursuit of rapper Valtònyc reveals widespread censorship in Spain

By Alejandro López, 26 July 2018

The unrelenting pursuit of rapper Josep Miquel Beltrán (stage name Valtònyc) is further evidence of the growing assault on free speech in Spain and throughout Europe.

Josep Valtònyc: “What’s happening to me could happen to anyone.”

By Alejandro López, 26 July 2018

“They put me on trial for telling true, objective facts, and that is because what is happening is scary. People are not going to be able to say what they think about those who are stealing public money from us, money taken out of our wages every month. We have the right to speak out, to criticize, to get angry.”

Spain’s Socialist Party prepares new austerity budget, boosts military spending

By Alejandro López, 19 July 2018

The social democrats’ proposals to slow the pace of austerity reflect fear of a social rebellion by workers and youth amid a growing strike wave in Spain.

Italy strands rescue ship Lifeline as EU refugee summit collapses

By Alex Lantier, 25 June 2018

This is only one of the horrors taking place in Mediterranean waters between Italy and Libya, as the EU moves to block refugee flows.

Podemos: Midwife of Spain’s new PSOE government

By Alejandro López, 22 June 2018

Podemos is an indispensable prop of Spain’s new PSOE government, which is pledged to impose EU austerity on workers and hike military spending.

The anti-worker program of Italy’s new populist and neo-fascist government

By Marc Wells, 1 June 2018

The policies adopted in the new government's program reflect the neo-fascist character of Lega as well as the law-and-order approach of the Five Star Movement.

Italy: Most right-wing government since Mussolini

By Peter Schwarz, 23 May 2018

On Sunday, the protest Five Star Movement (M5S) and the right-wing extremist Lega agreed on a joint government programme.

Rome: Buses explode due to lack of maintenance

By Allison Smith, 15 May 2018

Last year, 22 buses were destroyed by fire in the Italian capital and 2018 is already on track to being far worse, with four bus fires in a single month.

No solution to Italian government crisis

By Marianne Arens, 8 May 2018

The second attempt to form a government failed on May 3 when the leadership of the Democratic Party rejected a coalition with the Five Star Movement.

Explosive social conditions in Spain behind moves toward police state

By Vicky Short, 3 April 2018

Behind the police-state measures being enacted in Spain lie economic, political and social tensions that are also now finding expression in a growing movement of the working class.

Interview with a teacher from Greece: “Teachers have the same problems worldwide”

By Marianne Arens, 2 April 2018

Evangelos, a teacher from Greece working in Germany, expressed his solidarity with teachers in the US and reported on the recent teachers’ strike in Greece.

Spain’s Amazon workers call first ever strike at Madrid hub

By Alejandro López, 19 March 2018

For more than a year, Amazon has been negotiating with the unions to impose a new agreement that would drastically reduce workers’ rights.

Why the far-right won in Italy

By Peter Schwarz, 7 March 2018

Decades of austerity and attacks on democratic rights by the official “left” in Italy, aided and abetted by its pseudo-left apologists, have produced an electoral victory by the far-right parties.

The Italian election alliance Potere al Popolo: A repackaging of pseudo-left politics

By Marianne Arens and Peter Schwarz, 2 March 2018

The driving force behind this new Italian electoral alliance is Rifondazione Comunista, which for many years played a crucial role in stabilising the bourgeois order and suppressing the class struggle.

The Italian elections: A perspective for the working class

By Peter Schwarz, 28 February 2018

All the political problems that confront workers and young people across Europe are expressed in concentrated form in the elections to be held in Italy this Sunday.

Spain: Podemos support plummets after rightward lurch

By Paul Mitchell, 24 February 2018

A major factor in the decline of Podemos has been the experience of workers and middle-class people with the party in numerous town halls and city halls.

New round of attacks across Spain’s auto industry

By Alejandro López and Gabriel Labarthe, 20 February 2018

The auto industry in Spain is utilising the full conversion of plants to produce electric cars, claims of lower expectations of profits last year—combined with threats to move production offshore—to impose attacks on wages and work conditions.

Twenty thousand demonstrate against fascist rampage in Macerata, Italy

By Marianne Arens, 15 February 2018

Some 20,000 protesters, many of them young people, participated in an anti-fascist march through the town of Macerata Saturday.

The working class moves against Greece’s Syriza government

By Alex Lantier, 19 January 2018

The working class is fighting to defend its social and democratic rights against all the organizations that for decades passed for the “far left” of the political establishment.

Greek workers stop work in opposition to Syriza anti-strike and austerity measures

By Robert Stevens, 13 January 2018

Strikes shut down the Athens rail system, ships were unable to sail, and state-run hospitals were forced to rely on reserve staff.

Spanish PM Rajoy seeks to prevent Catalan nationalists from forming government

By Alejandro López and Paul Mitchell, 10 January 2018

The Supreme Court is planning to issue writs against a further 11 people linked to the deposed Catalan government for their part in organising last October’s independence referendum.

Italian election campaign officially opens

By Peter Schwarz, 30 December 2017

Italian President Sergio Matarella dissolved parliament on Thursday, opening campaigning for the election which will take place in the first week of March.

Italy’s “Black Wave” of neo-fascist attacks

By Marianne Arens and Peter Schwarz, 14 December 2017

Around 10,000 demonstrators protested last Saturday in the northern Italian city of Como against the “Black Wave”, the increase of neo-fascist attacks throughout the country.

Tens of thousands protest in Catalonia against moves towards authoritarian rule in Spain

By Alex Lantier, 9 November 2017

Tens of thousands of people protested yesterday in Catalonia against the detention of Catalan nationalist politicians as political prisoners by Madrid.

Deposed Catalan premier hands himself in to Belgian police

By Alex Lantier, 6 November 2017

Criticisms of Spain’s handling of the Catalan crisis from within European ruling circles reflect concerns that Madrid’s actions could provoke explosive popular opposition.

Catalan premier appeals to EU as opposition mounts to Madrid’s crackdown

By Alex Lantier, 1 November 2017

Puigdemont asked the EU to broker a deal between the Spanish government and the Catalan authorities based on the December 21 election imposed on Catalonia by Madrid.

EU backs Madrid’s imposition of authoritarian regime in Catalonia

By Francis Dubois, 31 October 2017

Fearing the eruption of mass struggles against austerity, the European financial oligarchy is backing the imposition of an authoritarian regime in Catalonia.

Catalan Premier Puigdemont flees to Belgium as Spain asserts direct rule over Catalonia

By Alejandro López, 30 October 2017

The Catalan nationalist parties are bitterly hostile to a political intervention in the crisis by the working class.

Catalonia announces plan for independence as Madrid threatens military rule

By Alejandro López, 26 October 2017

Madrid’s turn toward military dictatorship in Catalonia and across Spain is intended to strangle popular opposition to the European Union and the banks.

Catalan government in turmoil over Spain’s suppression of autonomy

By Paul Mitchell, 24 October 2017

The anti-democratic measures imposed under Article 155 are leading to a violent conflict with the Catalan population.

Move to Spanish military rule in Catalonia exposes bankruptcy of Podemos

By Alejandro López and Alex Lantier, 24 October 2017

Despite winning 5 million votes, Podemos neither wanted nor sought to mobilize opposition to the turn to authoritarian rule by Madrid, backed by the European Union.

Investigative journalist Daphne Caruana Galizia murdered in Malta

By Richard Tyler, 21 October 2017

Galizia was well known for her exposures of corruption and criminality at the top of Maltese politics and business.

200,000 protest jailing of Catalonian nationalist leaders in Barcelona

By Paul Mitchell, 19 October 2017

The jailing of Jordi Sànchez and Jordi Cuixart marks the first incarceration of Spanish political prisoners since the end of the fascist dictatorship of General Francisco Franco.

Jailing of separatist leaders sparks protest demonstrations in Catalonia

By Alejandro López and Paul Mitchell, 18 October 2017

The High Court ruling is an indication of the dictatorial measures the Spanish Popular Party regime is prepared to carry out.

Madrid rejects Puigdemont’s call for talks in Catalan referendum crisis

By Alex Lantier and Alejandro López, 17 October 2017

With Spanish military forces and thousands of police preparing for action, Spain is teetering on the brink of martial law and a bloody crackdown in Catalonia.

Deadline looms for Catalonia to confirm or deny independence declaration

By Alejandro López, 16 October 2017

The secessionists led by Catalonia’s regional premier Carles Puigdemont have spent the past week seeking to strike a deal with Madrid, but no deal is on offer.

Spain moves toward military rule in Catalonia

By Alex Lantier, 12 October 2017

As the Spanish army prepared to deploy armored units to Catalonia, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy announced plans to suspend the Catalan regional government.

Podemos’ call for dialogue on Catalonia: A political trap with deadly consequences

By Paul Mitchell, 12 October 2017

With calls for ‘patriotism’ and national unity, the pseudo-left Podemos is seeking recognition as a potential saviour of Spanish capitalism at a time of acute crisis.

Catalan premier affirms right to independence from Spain, but delays formal declaration

By Alex Lantier, 11 October 2017

Regional premier Carles Puigdemont delivered his speech amid an unfolding Spanish military and police intervention into Catalonia and the looming threat of a bloody crackdown.

Spain's Popular Party threatens repression if Catalan authorities declare independence

By Alejandro López, 10 October 2017

Popular Party leaders warned Monday that national police and civil guards are ready to halt any unilateral declaration in the Catalan parliament.

As Spanish crackdown looms, France’s New Anti-capitalist Party promotes Catalan nationalism

By Alex Lantier, 10 October 2017

Rather than advance a principled policy to unite the Spanish and Catalan working class against Spanish state repression, the Pabloite New Anti-capitalist Party is lining up behind the Catalan bourgeoisie.

Spanish government sends troops to Catalonia

By Paul Mitchell, 5 October 2017

The Ministry of Defense has dispatched army units to support the Civil Guard and national police in a possible further crackdown on the Catalonian population.

Defenders of imperialist “human rights” hail Spanish government’s crackdown in Catalonia

By Chris Marsden, 4 October 2017

The United States and the EU leapt to the defence of the Spanish government as it sent police to savagely beat and arrest anyone who dared to exercise their fundamental right to vote.

Spanish king demands new crackdown in Catalonia

By Alex Lantier, 4 October 2017

An open intervention by the Spanish king into public affairs is without precedent since the 1981 coup attempt in Spain.

Hundreds of thousands protest Madrid’s repression in Catalonia

By Alejandro López, 4 October 2017

Demonstrations took place in cities across Catalonia amid a “national work stoppage” backed by Catalan business groups, separatist parties, and trade unions.

EU hands Spain blank check for stepped-up police repression in Catalonia

By Alex Lantier and Alejandro López, 3 October 2017

After the mass repression in Catalonia Sunday, the European Commission issued a statement formally endorsing Madrid's handling of the Catalan independence crisis.

Millions defy brutal crackdown by Spanish police to vote in Catalan referendum

By Alejandro López and Alex Lantier, 2 October 2017

The Popular Party government of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy sent some 16,000 police to Catalonia to shut down polling stations, seize ballot boxes and attack voters.

Oppose the state crackdown on the Catalan independence referendum!

For working class unity! No to separatism in Spain!

Statement of the International Committee of the Fourth International, 30 September 2017

On the eve of the October 1 independence referendum in Catalonia, Spain is in the throes of its deepest political crisis since the fall of the fascist Franco regime.

Catalan secession crisis: Alongside Rajoy, Trump calls for a united Spain

By Paul Mitchell, 29 September 2017

The American ruling elite, like its European counterparts, are concerned the tensions between Madrid and Barcelona are provoking an explosive situation.

Spain’s crackdown on the Catalan secessionist referendum: Podemos looks for its “Syriza moment”

By Alejandro López, 29 September 2017

Podemos is presenting itself as the only alternative able to resolve the Catalan secessionist crisis without sparking social opposition.

Poverty, inequality on the rise in Spain as independence vote looms

By James Lerner, 26 September 2017

The growth in poverty and inequality is the intended product of the policies of the Spanish, Catalan, and European bourgeoisie.

Spanish government dispatches police reinforcements to Catalonia

By Paul Mitchell, 23 September 2017

Demonstrations continued in Catalonia yesterday as Madrid reinforced its police presence in the Eastern region.

Barcelona dockworkers boycott Spanish police ships sent against Catalan referendum

By Alejandro López, 22 September 2017

Dockworkers in Catalonia’s two main ports, Barcelona and Tarragona, are refusing supply services to vessels carrying riot police and paramilitary Civil Guard units.

Spanish police raid Catalan government buildings, arrest officials

By Paul Mitchell, 21 September 2017

Powerful sections of the Spanish ruling class are demanding that the Popular Party government crack down harder to block the October 1 Catalan independence referendum.

Spain threatens potential military takeover of Catalonia as referendum looms

By Alejandro López, 18 September 2017

Madrid’s inflammatory language and actions recall the thuggery of the Francoist dictatorship that ruled Spain from 1939 to 1978.

Greece: Syriza touts for investors and fêtes Macron

By Katerina Selin, 18 September 2017

The Greek parliamentary summer is over. In the weeks and months ahead a new round of cuts will begin, which will lead to fierce class battles.

Hundreds of thousands march in Catalonia as Madrid aims to block independence referendum

By Paul Mitchell, 12 September 2017

The march came amid an explosive political crisis in Spain, as Madrid mobilizes police and the courts to try to block the independence referendum.

Macron goes to Greece: “Radical left” Tsipras welcomes ex-banker turned French president

By Alex Lantier, 12 September 2017

Macron traveled to Greece to hail the austerity measures imposed by the Syriza (“Coalition of the Radical Left”) government, which show the future for the workers of France.

Spain deploys police as interior minister claims Barcelona terror cell dismantled

By Alejandro López, 21 August 2017

It is not credible to claim that the forces that organized the attack escaped the attention of the intelligence services.

Pseudo-left Popular Unity Candidacy campaigns for Catalan separatism

By Alejandro López, 17 August 2017

Last week, the Catalan pseudo-left separatist Popular Unity Candidacy launched its campaign for the referendum on Catalan independence from Spain planned for October 1.

Divisions mount in Spain’s Podemos as Catalan independence referendum looms

By Alejandro López, 24 July 2017

From its creation Podemos has been an amalgam of forces with opposing views on regional nationalism.

Syriza offers big business mega-profits in Greece

By John Vassilopoulos, 18 July 2017

Nothing is to be allowed that prevents the financial oligarchy from plundering Greece’s assets and stepping up the exploitation of an already pauperised workforce.

Italian local elections see defeat of Renzi’s Democratic Party

By Marianne Arens, 1 July 2017

With turnout below 50 percent, the election result is a huge vote of no confidence in the governing Democratic Party and the entire so-called centre-left camp.

Syriza government in Greece passes more austerity

By John Vassilopoulos, 13 June 2017

The bill includes measures designed to facilitate mass sackings as well as further sell-offs of public assets.

Greek workers mount one-day strike against EU austerity package

By Alex Lantier, 18 May 2017

Workers mobilized Wednesday across Greece in a strike called by the trade unions against new austerity measures being imposed by the Syriza government.

Sánchez aims to save Spain’s Socialist Party from collapse

By Alejandro López, 17 May 2017

The faction backing Sánchez represents sections of the ruling class seeking to preserve the PSOE from being destroyed, like its social democratic counterparts in Greece and France.

Hundreds of migrants drown in Mediterranean

By Bill Van Auken, 9 May 2017

The deaths occurred during a spike in crossings spurred in part by a planned crackdown that would send migrants back to hellish conditions in Libya.

Spain: Architect of 1936 Franco uprising reinterred with full military honours

By Alejandro López, 26 April 2017

While the army, the Church and the PP call on the victims of fascism to forget and move on, they secretly glorify and pay homage to the fascist coup plotters.

Small turnouts for Podemos-led demonstrations in Spain

By Alejandro López, 11 April 2017

The pseudo-left party has come into ever more open conflict with the working class and youth, even as it steadily acquires lucrative positions in the capitalist state.

Spanish dockworkers threaten to strike

By Alejandro López, 24 February 2017

Dockers are facing a savage attack on their working conditions by the Popular Party-led government, port companies and the European Union.

Pablo Iglesias re-elected as Podemos general secretary at Vistalegre II congress

By Alejandro López, 13 February 2017

Pablo Iglesias won the internal leadership contest yesterday, amid a bitter faction fight pitting his supporters against those of former Political Secretary Íñigo Errejón.

EU summit approves sealing off the Mediterranean from refugees

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 6 February 2017

As European governments hypocritically denounce Trump’s anti-immigrant measures, the EU is planning to build up the Libyan coastguard and establish internment camps in North Africa to keep out refugees.

Spanish media promote Anticapitalistas’ and Podemos’ “back to the streets” campaign

By Alejandro López, 4 January 2017

The aim of the campaign is to trap escalating social anger behind Podemos and block the emergence of a politically independent struggle of the working class for socialism.

Paolo Gentiloni named as new Italian prime minister

By Marianne Arens, 13 December 2016

At the head of a transitional government, Gentiloni will continue the policies of his predecessor Matteo Renzi, particularly in dealing with the massive banking and debt crisis.

Italian Prime Minister Renzi resigns after defeat in constitutional referendum

By Alex Lantier and Mark Wells, 5 December 2016

The vote on Renzi’s referendum, which was rejected by a margin of 59 to 41 percent, expresses growing opposition to the institutions of European and world capitalism.

Vote no on the Italian constitutional referendum!

By Joint statement of the Socialist Equality Party (Britain), Parti de l'égalité Socialiste (France) and Partei für Soziale Gleichheit (Germany), 3 December 2016

The referendum would give the prime minister virtually unchecked powers to impose his party's agenda, in a major step towards authoritarian forms of rule.

EU fears ‘no’ vote in Italian referendum

By Marianne Arens, 28 November 2016

The constitutional reform, a step toward authoritarian rule, is the key element of the program of Prime Minister Renzi.

Over 300 refugees drown in Mediterranean

By Martin Kreickenbaum, 19 November 2016

Turning refugees away from Europe’s coasts and leaving them to drown in the Mediterranean is a crime that exposes the EU’s true brutality.

Trump’s election as seen from Europe

By Alex Lantier, 19 November 2016

Well before the content of Trump’s foreign policy has come into focus, it is clear that his election marks a historic shift in world affairs, raising the specter of global conflict.

Greek protests greet Obama’s last overseas tour as US president

By Alex Lantier, 16 November 2016

Obama aimed to reassure the European ruling classes that Donald Trump's election would not undermine their relations with the United States.

Syriza agrees to further austerity measures

By John Vassilopoulos, 18 October 2016

European Union commissioner Pierre Moscovici praised Syriza’s “tremendous work” in imposing all the attacks demanded against the working class.

Syriza government assaults Greek retirees

By Katerina Selin, 5 October 2016

On Monday, the Greek government mobilised the police to attack protesting retirees.

Spanish Socialist Party coup exposes Podemos

By Paul Mitchell and Alex Lantier, 4 October 2016

Podemos’ perspective was to form a government with the Socialist Party, which is now working to bring a right-wing government to power in Spain.

Spanish Socialist Party leader resigns to allow formation of right-wing government

By Alejandro López, 3 October 2016

The success of the inner-party putsch against Pedro Sánchez underscores how the ruling class uses parties like the Socialist Party (PSOE) to impose unpopular policies.

Italian Prime Minister Renzi announces constitutional referendum for December

By Marianne Arens, 1 October 2016

The referendum is a step towards authoritarian forms of rule and lays the basis for fierce attacks on Italian workers.

Push to install right-wing Spanish government splits Socialist Party

By Alejandro López and Alex Lantier, 30 September 2016

On Wednesday, half of the Spanish Socialist Party’s Federal Executive resigned, launching an inner-party putsch aiming to force the installation of a right-wing government.

Lesbos fire highlights tragic situation of refugees in Greece

By John Vassilopoulos, 27 September 2016

Around 60 percent of the camp was destroyed, including sleeping tents and clothing supplies.

Earthquake disaster aggravates social crisis in Italy

By Marianne Arens, 10 September 2016

Two weeks after the earthquake in central Italy on August 24, it is clear that the devastation and loss of life was not due to a “natural disaster” but corruption and government indifference.

Spain’s public debt reaches record levels

By Alejandro López, 31 August 2016

All the major parties—Popular Party, Socialist Party, Citizens and the pseudo-left Podemos—are committed to upholding the payment of the debt.

Death toll in Italian earthquake climbs to more than 250

By Marianne Arens, 26 August 2016

Italy’s civil defence organisation and volunteers continue to dig in the hope of saving those still buried alive.

Devastating earthquake hits Italy

By Marianne Arens, 25 August 2016

At least 200 have died, hundreds are still missing, thousands were injured and tens of thousands have been left homeless.

Appalling conditions in Greek refugee camps

By Katerina Selin, 23 August 2016

The mainstream media has gone silent on refugees in Greece, but the suffering of these people, fleeing war and poverty, continues without interruption.

EU demands more austerity after Spain and Portugal fail to cut deficits

By Alejandro López and Paul Mitchell, 19 July 2016

The EU’s unprecedented call for billions of euros in fines comes amid a major banking crisis in Italy and the Brexit crisis.

One year since Syriza’s betrayal in Greece

By Bill Van Auken, 15 July 2016

Syriza’s ceaseless collaboration in the implementation of brutal austerity measures has vindicated the warnings made by the WSWS even before the pseudo-left party came to power.

Head-on train collision near Bari, Italy kills at least 25

By our reporter, 13 July 2016

The single track where the trains collided has no automatic braking system similar to other areas in Italy’s poorer southern regions.

Spanish interior minister used state apparatus to topple opponents

By James Lerner, 30 June 2016

The “Fernándezgate” recordings, which show Interior Minister Jorge Fernández Díaz conspiring against political opponents, expose the disintegration of democratic forms of rule in Spain.