United in the Vía Campesina

"I think that what really unites us is a fundamental commitment to humanism because the antithesis of this is individualism and materialism.... The common problems of land, production, technology, markets, ideological formation, training, poverty - all of these we have in common. But what also unites us are great aspirations. We are all convinced that the current structures of economic, political, and social power are unjust and exclusionary. What unites us is a spirit of transformation and struggle to change these structures all over the world. We aspire to a better world, a more just world, a more humane world, a world where real equality and social justice exist. These aspirations and solidarity in rural struggles keep us united in the Vía Campesina."

- RAFAEL ALEGRIA, FORMER OPERATIONAL SECRETARIAT OF THE VÍA CAMPESINA 

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Land reform

Via Campesina III Int. Conference

The struggle for agrarian reform and social changes in the rural areas

The historical reality
1. During the past century, severeal countries undertook agrarian reform programs. These programs were aimed at confronting the large landed properties and at democratizing access to land for poor peasants. It can be said generally that the experience of land reform was driven by two important motivations: a) There were capitalist agrarian reforms that, above all, sought to create an internal market for the national development of industry, and to transform the landless peasants into small autonomous producers and b) also socialist agrarian reforms that distributed the land to the peasants, but these reforms involved deeper processes of changing the modes of capitalist production, and for this reason they also included other mechanisms like the collectivization of means of production and production itself, and the nationalization of land.

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Biodiversity and genetic resources

Via Campesina III Int. Conference

Aspects related to our daily life and peasant activity are being discussed in the world at this time; such as the regulation and use of biodiversity, the use and preservation of genetic resources and release of transgenic organisms affecting the health of the population, the rural environment and peasant economy. The international institutions responsible for such aspects are facing a great dilemma: To adopt the rational and intelligent use of the natural resources in order to achieve a sustainable development, or to adopt, under the pressure exerted by the free trade, the domination of the financial capital, and abandonment of food security.

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Bangalore declaration

Via Campesina III Int. Conference

BANGALORE DECLARATION OF THE VIA CAMPESINA October 6, 2000 -- Bangalore, India


We, the Via Campesina, a global movement of rural women, peasant and small-scale farmers, agriculture workers and indigenous peoples’ organizations, from all the regions of the world (Asia, Europe, the Americas and Africa) have gathered near Bangalore, India in the 3rd International Assembly to confirm our determination to defend our cultures and our rights. More than 100 delegates from 40 countries representing hundreds of peasant organizations and millions of peasant families met from October 3 - 6, 2000.

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