- Published on Tuesday, 23 September 2014 14:48
Dr. Shakeel Bhatti
International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA)
cc. Francis Gurry, Director General of WIPO, Secretary-General of UPOV
cc. Member States of ITPGRFA
Dear Dr. Bhatti,
We the undersigned organizations from around the world are keen to see full implementation of Farmers Rights. The Preamble of the Treaty and Article 9 on Farmers’ Rights, recognizes the contribution that local and indigenous communities and farmers of all regions of the world have made and will continue to make for the conservation and development of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture (PGRFA). It also explicitly recognizes that Treaty Members have the responsibility of realizing farmers’ rights. This includes the right to save, use, exchange and sell farm-saved seed/propagating material; the right to participate in decision making on matters related to the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA; the right to participate in the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from, the use of plant genetic resources as well as protection of traditional knowledge relevant to PGRFA. The treaty acknowledges that these elements are fundamental to the realization of Farmers’ Rights and the promotion of Farmers’ Rights at national and international levels.
- Published on Monday, 15 September 2014 20:19
(Guatemala, September 15, 2014) - On September 4th, after ten days of widespread street protests against the biotech giant Monsanto’s expansion into Guatemalan territory, groups of indigenous people joined by social movements, trade unions and farmer and women’s organizations won a victory when congress finally repealed the legislation that had been approved in June.
The demonstrations were concentrated outside the Congress and Constitutional Court in Guatemala City during more than a week, and coincided with several Mayan communities and organizations defending food sovereignty through court injunctions in order to stop the Congress and the President, Otto Perez Molina, from letting the new law on protection of plant varieties, known as the “Monsanto Law”, take effect.
On September 2, the Mayan communities of Sololá, a mountainous region 125 kilometers west from the capital, took to the streets and blocked several main roads. At this time a list of how individual congressmen had voted on the approval of the legislation in June was circulating.
- Published on Monday, 15 September 2014 17:04
It is not only about the use of industrial agricultural means to engage in the monoculture of primary resources for exportation, or the delocalised production of foodstuffs for other countries. It implies extractivism: control of water, mining, oil industries, deforestation, drug trafficking, environmental services and REDD projects (land areas held in disregards or so called marginal lands), and the subsequent speculation on these, followed by real estate, tourism, urban development, military geopolitics and much more.
In this edition of the Nyéléni Newsletter we want to make an overview of this process and of the possibilities of resisting it from our communities.
- Published on Thursday, 11 September 2014 15:56
Honorees Represent Communities Defending Their Human Rights to Food in the Face of Policies of Land and Water Grabbing, Migration, and Militarization
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 9, 2014
Des Moines, IA — The US Food Sovereignty Alliance (USFSA) is honored to name the Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC) of Palestine, based in Gaza and the West Bank, and Community to Community Development /Comunidad a Comunidad (C2C) of Bellingham, Washington, as co-recipients of the 2014 Food Sovereignty Prize.
Their stories of continuous struggle to defend the rights of their communities – farmers and fishers in the occupied Palestinian territories and migrant Mexican farm workers in Washington State, both seeking to produce their own food, on their own land, in their home communities – stand in stark contrast to the storylines coming from agribusiness: that technological changes to crops can meet human needs and resolve hunger.