Notes from the VII Conference: Political context and struggles in Latin America and the Caribbean

The first afternoon of the VIIth International Conference of La Via Campesina was devoted to the international political context which is characterised by the unsolvable capitalist crisis and ever stronger pressures on populations, states and the environment together with the dangerous commercialisation of natural resources. The future is the struggles and resistances that have been outlined. La Via Campesina’s members, throughout the world, consider that the only alternative to the proposed model is food sovereignty, and agroecology is the only way to achieve this and to feed the people. In these two spaces the regional specificities were analysed.

Political Context

Latin America is the stage for right wing governance, with the exception of certain countries that have a socialist government, which have experienced agrarian reform and are the homes of resistance. Many countries have recently seen coups d’états. The struggle for democracy and against the oligarchy is increasingly more violent with those who take action for their rights brutally criminalised. The murders of those who promote peace transforms in the logic of repression, in Paraguay, Honduras, Brazil, Guatemala, and the militarisation process is bolstered. The Venezuelan case has showcased the problem of information, the majority of the media is in the hands of those who are already in power. Everywhere from the Caribbean to the Tierra del Fuego, capitalist aggression makes the battle to preserve all natural resources, beyond the historic struggle for the land, all the more urgent.

Struggles and resistance

Thanks to countries such as El Salvador, Bolivia, Cuba and Nicaragua, examples of victories at the political level exist. Nevertheless a movement of everyday resistance based on socialism is also taking place across the continent.

Publié par La Via Campesina sur mercredi 19 juillet 2017

Within the peasant movement, education is essential for the advent of a fair and united society. Across the continent, political training is the keystone of the resistance. Peasants benefit from ideological training as well as technical training through peasant schools and universities, peasant to peasant exchanges and camps for young people or women. Only food sovereignty can feed the Americas, and this is also a way of fighting. For example, in Venezuela non-market production initiatives, counter the food siege applied by distribution businesses who no longer provide certain basic foodstuffs to the population. In addition to the message of peace that La Via Campesina promotes, it is also involved peace actions throughout the world. For example, in Colombia, it actively participated in the peace process and is now responsible for ensuring it is applied.