Stop Free Trade Agreements!

‘We are fed up!’ Demonstration January 17th in Berlin

CALL: To the fifth “We are fed up!” Demonstration in Berlin

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“We are fed up with agro industry!”

Agribusinesses continue to gain ground: A few international corporations are undermining seed diversity and are pushing for GMOs on farms. Investors continue to build new, industrial mega-barns, where animals are subjected to sufferable conditions. At the G7 Summit and through free trade agreements like the TTIP and CETA, the world leaders are setting the course for the global industrialisation of agriculture. The consequences are ubiquitous: More and more farmers must abandon their fields, both here and in the south. Markets are flooded with cheap meat. The cultivation of monocultures is encroaching on the rainforest. Arable land has become an object of speculation. And worldwide hunger still remains a reality.

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Rome: STOP TTIP, CETA and other destructive trade policies

b_350_0_16777215_00___images_stories_fta_fta-rome.jpg(Rome, 11th October) The delegation of La Via Campesina, gathered in Rome for the meeting of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS), reiterates its rejection of the ongoing negotiations of several free trade agreements such as the TTIP[1], TPP[2] and CETA[3]. We do this within the framework of the Global Day of Action against TTIP and in solidarity with the 16th October, the Global Day of Action for Food Sovereignty. The delegation is participating in the 41st session of the CFS where the 10th anniversary of the Right to Food Guidelines is being celebrated. For small-scale farmers there is no reason to celebrate however, as the implementation of the Guidelines has not advanced at all. Conversely, trade negotiations, contrary to the Right to Food, are advancing at a concerning pace.

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Korean peasants make a "three steps, one bow" pilgrimage against rice tariffication

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On 28th June, Korean farmers from all around country gathered to make a "three steps, one bow" pilgrimage to protect food sovereignty. Civil society organizations including Korean Peasants League (KPL) and Korean Women Peasants Association (KWPA) gathered in Chunggye Stream Square. They made a “three steps, one bow” pilgrimage for about two hours with wearing T-shirts printed on the face of Jun Bong Jun, who led farmers’ revolution in 1890’.

This people’s rally held to make public opinion that opening rice market is the problem not only of farmers, but also consumers and all citizens. Kim Youngho, president of KPL, said that “destroying food sovereignty means that our food jar will be in other countries like US and China. If our food jar will be in other countries, we cannot eat our food safely.

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“Sunflower Revolution” in Taiwan : STOP Police Brutality, NO to Free Trade Agreements NOW!

Appeal for international solidarity of Taiwan Rural Front (TRF) and Taiwan Farmers Union (TFU)

b_350_0_16777215_00___images_stories_fta_occupation_parliament_taiwanscaled.jpg(March 25, 2014, Taiwan) Taiwan Rural Front (TRF) and Taiwan Farmers Union (TFU), member of La Via Campesina in East and Southeast Asia, launch an emergency appeal for international solidarity against current administration’s rush for cross-strait free trade agreement and excessive use of police force.

Pressure on the Ma administration has been mounting since the ruling Chinese Nationalist party (KMT) pushed to bypass full legislative review of the controversial Cross Straits Service Trade agreement (CSSTA) on March 17.

Enraged by the politicking of the ruling party, nearly three hundred young Taiwanese stormed the legislature on March 18 and declared indefinite occupation of its main chamber. The occupy movement quickly gained momentum as over ten thousand Taiwanese flocked all sides of the legislature building in support of students’ cause. Represented by an alliance consisted of students, lawyers and civil organizations, the movement has since demanded that :

1) the CSSTA be retracted,

2) a formal monitoring mechanism for all cross-strait agreements be established, and

3) negotiations of any sort between Taiwan and China be halted before such monitoring mechanism exists.

Read more: “Sunflower Revolution” in Taiwan : STOP Police...

Statement on the 2013 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Forum

Gerak Lawan and the Social Movements on Alternatives for Asia

b_350_0_16777215_00___images_stories_fta_2013-10-28_apec_scaled.jpgThe 2013 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) hosted and chaired by Indonesia this year, met in Bali from 5-7 October 2013. The APEC has no enforceable agreements like ASEAN’s, but it continues to serve as a platform for economic and political leaders to come together and mainly push the agenda of investments liberalization and free trade, and address security issues in the region.

Indonesia's leadership is deemed crucial in driving regional and global economic growth, especially in the light of the global economic slowdown and financial crisis. Under the theme “Resilient Asia-Pacific, Engine of Global Growth” theme, Indonesia is expected to play a major role in positioning the region as the “engine of global economic growth”.

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Thailand :Assembly of the Poor demanding Thai-EU FTA Talk must not restrain freedom of seed

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Over 100 farmers from Assembly of the Poor (AOP) – La Via Campesina member in Southeast Asia – gathered in front of Thai Government House in Bangkok in the morning, as a campaign action to scrutinize the second round of Thai-EU FTA negotiation going on in Chaingmai province during 16-20 September. Assembly of the Poor was met by Mr. Suporn Attawong, Deputy Secretary-General to Prime Minister.

AOP representative read the statement, saying that the ongoing Thai-EU FTA negotiation is a state’s economic policy which will affect natural resource bases, wellbeing and rights of the poor. The attempt of EU to pressure Thai government to extend the intellectual property to cover genetic resources and bio resources will open the door for the corporates to monopolize seed and bio technology industries and grab natural resources from the poor. Farmers will have to buy seeds at high price while keeping seeds for next season, mutual exchange of seeds and protection of seeds and genetic resources become crimes.

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Colombia : International Call for Solidarity with the National Agrarian and Popular Strike

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We - Farmer, Indigenous, Fishing, Women and Farmworker Organizations who are part of La Via Campesina and follow a global model of class solidarity and internationalism - express our undivided support and backing to the close two hundred thousand peasants, farmers, transporters and miners who have mobilized for the last ten days in the National Agrarian and Popular Strike, organized by grassroots and rural sectors throughout Colombia.

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Family Farmers and Allies Converge on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) to Mark La Via Campesina's International Day of Peasant Struggle

Press release of Family Farm Defenders

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Call Upon the U.S. Congress to Reject the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP), Demand the U.S. Dept of Justice (DoJ) Take Anti-Trust Action Against Corrupt Food Giants, and Reassert the Right of Food Sovereignty For ALL!

Fri. April 19th  

12:00 Noon  Protest & Leaflet, Chicago Mercantile Exchange, 141 W. Jackson

Fri. April 19th    

5:30 pm  Potluck & Forum, Jane Adams Hull House Museum, 800 S. Halsted

To mark Via Campesina’s International Day of Peasant Struggle, family farmers and their allies will once again converge on the doorstep of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) – 141 W. Jackson – at Noon on Fri. April 19th to expose the rampant price fixing by commodity speculators that is behind the ongoing global food crisis.  Last year on May 23rd thousands of angry citizens turned up inside and outside the CME annual shareholders meeting to demand greater social responsibility from Chicago's most lucrative corporation, which posted $1.9 billion in profits in 2011 while receiving millions in local, state, and federal tax cuts.

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India, Farmer's and Trade Unions Protest against the EU India FTA

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Bhartiya Kisan Union Farmers at protest against EU India FTA in Feb 2012

Farmers and trade unions of India have been protesting against the undemocratic EU India free trade agreement. Over the last couple of months, the alliance of organizations called the Anti FTA front has written 872 letters to important officials, organizations and political parties including the Prime Minister and the Members of Parliament about this unfair trade deal. “There are serious impacts on food security, livelihood security of millions of farmers and small retailers and we haven't even been informed or consulted about the EU India FTA,” said Rakesh Tikait of Bhartiya Kisan Union a member of La Via Campesina. In fact no impact studies have been made available even to the Indian parliament or state governments, let alone the ordinary people of India whose lives are at stake. Ironically, the Indian government has left no stone unturned to show its urgency and deep commitment to European business making media statements about its plans to swiftly conclude the EU India FTA by March this year.

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Understanding Free Trade through the KORUS FTA and the Necessity of Regional Economic Cooperation

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Under the guise of trade liberalization, the state becomes the advance guard for transnational corporations (TNCs) concluding FTAs that further increase the profits of TNCs by exploiting people’s lives. Yet, TNCs are still not satisfied. They now want to transform existing free trade agreements into a more comprehensive and stronger form that would further limit the ability of social movements to demand government policies that improve and safeguard the well-being of farmers, workers, and consumers...

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