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On Presence Of Via Campesina In World Social Forum

31 January 2002 @ 0 h 00 min - 5 February 2002 @ 0 h 00 min GMT

Tegucigalpa, 21-1-2002
Via Campesina will be present with a strong delegation in Porto Alegre, Brazil at the second World Social Forum (WSF). This Forum is an important event that will reactivate our struggle against neo-liberal policies at an international level.

The events that occurred on September 11th have changed the context in which civil society operates but it did not change the agenda. On the contrary, neo-liberal policies have led to increased poverty, exclusion and repression. Now more than ever we have to put forward with urgency the need to change these neo-liberal policies. Via Campesina hopes that the WSF will be the place where social movements will meet to relaunch and strengthen their presence in the struggle for change at the national, regional and international level. Via Campesina wants the WSF to be dynamic, participatory and a place where we can put forward our alternative proposals, develop our strategies and calendar of common action to put these proposals into practice.

An important conclusion of the WSF from 2001 was the discussion and the agreement of social movements on a calendar of action, published as the “Porto Alegre call for mobilization”. Many of the actions proposed in this calendar were put into practice at the international level (Quebec and Genoa), national and regional level. Via Campesina is committed to continue this process during the second WSF.

We have however some concerns about current developments in the WSF. There is a tendency to “institutionalize” the WSF. In our opinion this puts at risk the independent, autonomous and contesting nature that emerged in the WSF.

In our opinion the WSF should remain a place where movements and organizations can actively and freely participate to develop alternatives, strategies and actions, respecting the diversity and plurality of movements and organizations. We have to maintain an open and pluralist platform that contributes to political action for change.

Via Campesina has the confidence that the WSF will continue to be a place were social movements can come together to strengthen their struggles against the inhuman neo-liberal politics.

How to contact Via Campesina delegation in Porto Alegre: Place where we stay: Convento de Capuchinos Rua Paulino Chaves, 291 al lado de la Parroquia Santo Antonio Barrio Santo Antonio (close to the Partenon and the Avenida Bento Goncalves) By email: nicoverhagen@hotmail.com By phone: Tel: 0055-51-223 2800 (please ask for the direct line) To receive all information from the Via Campesina delegation during the World Social Forum please subscribe to our newsgroup by sending a blank message to: ViaCampesinaPortoAlegre-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

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31 January 2002 @ 0 h 00 min GMT
5 February 2002 @ 0 h 00 min GMT
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