- Published on Thursday, 23 April 2015 20:18
Article by Solidarity Sweden – Latin America
2015 is a year of big—and perhaps irreversible—changes due to the multiple processes of Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) around the world. These deals are being concretized without most people understanding what they imply and how they affect citizens all over the world. Therefore, as April 17th, marks the International Day of Peasants’ Struggle, peasants themselves have dedicated the commemoration as a time to fight against FTAs and corporate power. We too, introduce the question of FTAs to encourage awareness about what is at stake. What is the origin of these agreements? What effects have they had where they are already implemented? Who wins and who loses?
- Published on Thursday, 16 April 2015 21:14
Press Release—La Via Campesina
(Zimbabwe, Harare, April 17, 2015) Today thousands of women and men farmers of the international peasant movement La Via Campesina mobilize worldwide against Transnational Corporations (TNCs) and Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) which affect peasant and small-scale agriculture and national food sovereignty. Since April 17, 1996 La Via Campesina celebrates this day as a global day of action with allies and friends.
Free Trade Agreements promote TNCs and a capitalist industrialised mode of production heavily reliant on agrochemicals. These have increased the displacement, expulsion, and disappearance of peasants. Free Trade Agreements put profit over all other rights and concerns. Currently, the most significant FTAs in history are being negotiated by the European Union, the United States, and Canada. These agreements, if finalised, will liberalize trade and investment markets in favour of transnational companies (see tv.viacampesina.org/April-17th).
- Published on Monday, 13 April 2015 22:02
(Argentina, Buenos, April 11, 2015) The IV Assembly of Youth marked the beginning of the VI Congress of the Latin American Coordination of Rural Organizations, CLOC-Via Campesina in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The congress started on the 10th and will end on the 17th of April, and will close with a massive march in commemoration of the International Day of Peasant's Struggle.
Over a thousand representatives of peasant movements from the Americas, Asia, Africa and Europe will attend this gathering, united by the slogan: Against Capitalism for the sovereignty of our peoples: America is united and continues to struggle. Diego Montón, representative of CLOC-VC’s general secretariat said that “The congress is arranged every four years in order to join forces in the struggle against systematic human rights violations to which our peasantry is exposed”.
- Published on Monday, 13 April 2015 20:35
An important achievement from the International Year of Family Farming which the UN declared in 2014, in the context of the food crisis, has been to amplify the debate between agribusiness and peasant agriculture, which the symbiosis between the former and big media had practically silenced.
At the official level, for example, FAO General Director José Graziano da Silva, in his opening speech at the 24th session of the Committee on Agriculture (COAG) in Rome (September), declared that policymakers should support a broad array of approaches to overhauling global food systems, making them healthier and more sustainable while acknowledging that “we cannot rely on an input intensive model to increase production and that the solutions of the past have shown their limits”... Calling for a “paradigm shift”, he said that today's main challenges are to lower the use of agricultural inputs, especially water and chemicals, in order to put agriculture, forestry and fisheries on a more sustainable and productive long-term path.[i]