After French MP and CETA critic denied entry, NFU asks "Is freedom of speech the victim of free trade?"
- Published on Wednesday, 12 October 2016 15:12
(Montreal, October 12, 2016) - On October 11, 2016, French farmer José Bové, who is a Member of the European Parliament and an outspoken critic of the Canada European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), was denied entry into Canada at the Montreal airport. No explanation for his detention has been given. The Council of Canadians had invited Bové to speak about the trade deal's implications for agriculture. At the same event, Jan Slomp, President of the National Farmers Union (NFU) was to share his critique of CETA and call for an alternative approach to trade that would see economic prosperity generated from the grassroots up.
"We are deeply concerned that an elected representative of the European Parliament has been denied access to Canada, and thus denied the opportunity to express his opinion about the flaws in CETA," said Slomp. "A strong democracy allows all information to be shared and all opinions to be heard. What is there in CETA that the authorities need to hide? Is freedom of speech now being sacrificed on the altar of free trade?"
- Published on Friday, 07 October 2016 19:57
Brussels, 5th October 2016
The Peace Process continues: La Via Campesina Europe in solidarity with Colombian farmers
Veronique Léon, European farmer and former national secretary of the Confédération Paysanne in France, participated in the international solidarity mission to Colombia from the 19th to the 24th of September. Their aim was to support the movement of farmers who are demanding that the peace agreements, made with the national government following the mobilisation of the past years, are respected. This goal is not put into question by the victory of the “no” vote in this weekend’s referendum on the peace agreements signed by FARC-EP and the government of Juan Manuel Santos.
The central issue concerns the right to land, and to territory of the farmers of Colombia, an issue which is dealt with in the first part of the peace agreement which was signed by the Colombian government and FARC-EP. The mission observed the interference of and impact on multinationals, as well as the processes of restitution and reforestation.
Social movements call for 'unity beyond borders' at the Southern Africa Tribunal on Transnational Corporations (TNCs)
- Published on Thursday, 06 October 2016 16:45
The Southern African People’s Solidarity Network hosted a Permanent Peoples' Tribunal on Transnational Corporations in Manzini, Swaziland between the 16th and 19th of August. The tribunal was held on 16th and 17th followed by discussions until the 19th about building a 'Peoples-Driven Southern African Development Community (SADC) committed to the total liberation of all'.
Several organisations and social movements from countries that included Swaziland, Mozambique, South Africa, Lesotho, Zambia, Mauritius, Malawi and Zimbabwe discussed the impacts of the transnational corporations on the communities and women at large. The members who attended the tribunal expressed their dissent towards European countries that fund transnational corporations to come to Africa and wreak havoc on its environment, ecology and natural diversity, thereby impacting the lives of millions of people.
"Our rights, our needs, our identities have been defined on behalf of us, but not by us", Tanmay Joshi, a young farmer from India
- Published on Thursday, 06 October 2016 13:34
At the recently concluded Global Consultation on Farmers' Rights in Bali, organsied by the Ministry of Indonesia with the support of the Ministry of Norway and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA), Tanmay Joshi, a young farmer from the state of Maharshtra in India spoke passionately. Here is the full text of this speech.