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India farmer kills himself at Delhi

An Indian farmer has died after hanging himself from a tree before a huge crowd at a rally addressed by the chief minister of Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal.

Gajendra Singh, from the western state of Rajasthan, was taken to hospital, where doctors pronounced him dead.

Mr Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) had staged the rally in Delhi to protest against Prime Minister Narendra Modi's controversial land acquisition bill.

Opponents of the bill say it will hurt the interests of farmers.

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La Via Campesina extremely concerned about Yarmouk Palestinian Refugee Camp situation

La Via Campesina Release, April 7th, 2015

2015-Yarmouk camp.jpgLa  Via Campesina is extremely concerned about the situation in the Yarmouk Palestinian Refugee Camp in southern Damascus

La Via Campesina has been watching recent reports of the invasion of the Palestinian refugee camp Yarmouk by extremist armed forces with great concern. It comes at a time when the camp is suffering from a two-year siege on it. We are extremely worried about the well being of our friends and partners in the food sovereignty projects on the ground, who have been targeted by  armed forces. The recent targeted execution of civil society activist Firas Al Naji—a founder of food sovereignty projects in Yarmouk (which aim to ease the suffering of a community living with severe malnutrition due to the siege), among other initiatives—is a dark example of the grave situation that civil society faces.  We are also deeply concerned for the safety of Abdullah Al Khateeb and other human rights rights defenders targeted by militant groups. The threat against all of these active members of civil society is massive, and we do not want to stand quietly aside while they and their community are targeted.

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In response to the criminalisation of the social struggle, La Via Campesina sends a message of solidarity

(Harare, March 27, 2015) La Via Campesina International expresses its condemnation of the following acts of criminalisation and persecution of social protest that have taken place very recently:

  • The attempted murder of Gene Santos, a communications advisor for the the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST) of Brazil. The incident took place in Tamboril, on the night of March 13th, when Mr. Santos was returning to his home in the settlement of “Monte Alegre”. He was shot at several times by a single person, but was able to escape unharmed.
  • A death threat against João Pedro Stedile, who is also a member of the MST as well as a leader of La Via Campesina at the international level. A notice was sent via social media asking for “Stedile alive or dead” and describing him as a leader of the MST and an “enemy of the homeland”. The writer offered a reward of 10,000 reales to whoever responded to his request. In this way, the assassination of the campesino leader is being encouraged with the promise of payment for killing him.

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Statement of Assembly of the Poor Condemns violence

2015 chai_boonthonglek_0.jpgCondemning the Use of Violence against the Poor to Protect the Capitalists’ Interests

(Thailand, February 14, 2015) On 3 February 2015 Mr. Pianrat Boonrit, the president of an agricultural cooperative, a member of Southern Peasant Federation of Thailand, was summoned by the military for attitude adjustment and detained in a jail in Vibhavadirangsit Military Camp in Surat Thani Province until 5 February 2015. On the same evening the military demolished Permsab Community (a member of the agricultural cooperative, the Southern Peasant Federation of Thailand). The community locates in Chaiyaburi District in Surat Thani Province. The community members are struggling for land rights. They held a vigil not allowing the capitalist to enter and harvest oil palms in a national reserved forest of which the concession was expired for 14 years. Later on 11 February 2015 Mr. Chai Boonthonglek, age 61, also a member of the Federation was shot dead.

Yesterday (13 February 2015), the joint armed force of police and military officers guarded a private company’s transportation of the drilling equipment into Ban Na-moon Village, Doon Sad Sub-district, Kra-nuan District in Khonkaen Province to install the drilling rig. The drilling is continuously opposed by local people. Even the National Reform Council, hand-picked by National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) itself, voted 130 to 79 against the petroleum concession policy. But the NCPO does not listen and is stubbornly determined to use violence to clear the path for the capitalists. 

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