Statement from "L'Etincelle": The Central Committee of Lutte Ouvriere decided on the 2nd of February to "suspend" the "Etincelle" minority faction until the organisation's next congress, which will be in December.
This de facto expulsion, which is to be applied at all levels of the organisation and without exception, to all political activities, in particular the production and sale of the newspaper and of industrial bulletins, comes at the time when LO is making a political U-turn and looking to integrate itself into a centre-left alliance during the coming municipal elections.
The pretext which the LO leadership has used is itself instructive. This expulsion has been carried through because two outgoing councilors, elected in 2001 on an LO list in Wattrelos (North), of whom one is a member of the Minority, have refused to be sidelined this year, as this manoeuvre was intended merely to ease negotiations around places on a centre-left common list led by the Parti Socialiste. We cannot stress enough that this is about getting rid of those who will not agree to line up behind the Parti Socialiste and who refuse to accept an alliance with the centre left of the kind which LO had always opposed until today, whether the centre-left be in opposition or in government.
This alliance will certainly not be painless as on the one hand the Parti Socialiste has until now rebuffed LO's offers of help in a majority of the towns where they have been made and on the other, the PS is complaining loudly about the reticence and even the hostility on the part of some far-left activists and sympathisers. These difficulties are not unrelated to the LO leadership's determination to expel its internal oppositon.
Whatever it may be, the "Etincelle" Fraction will naturally continue its activist work and its political combat for the construction of a revolutionary communist workers' party, amongst other things for a turn from LO to politics not stained by electoral opportunism.
Paris 4th February 2008
The "Etincelle" Fraction of Lutte Ouvrière
At http://www.convergencesrevolutionnaires.org/spip.php?article1693. It's in French, but it gives details on the dispute about the municipal elections which led to LO excluding the minority.