Revolution is having a sense of the historic moment; it is changing everything that must be changed; it is full equality and freedom; it is being treated and treating others like human beings; it is emancipating ourselves on our own and through our own efforts; it is challenging powerful dominant forces in and beyond the social and national arena; it is defending the values in which we believe at the price of any sacrifice.
Fidel Castro Ruiz, May 1st, 2000.
In Havana, Cuba, on the 60th anniversary of signing of the Agrarian Reform Law, 27 years after the foundation of the CLOC and 25 years after its first Continental congress, 300 men and women delegates of peasant, indigenous, afro-descendant, landless, artisan fishers, native peoples and rural men and women workers, the youth and women from 30 countries in representation of all of the regions of America, as well as delegates from Via Campesina International, Africa, Asia, Europe and North America, and over 50 international guests all met to hold the VII Continental Congress of the CLOC Via Campesina.
In the long journey of unity and coordination of the struggles, we continue to reflect on the historic moment and the challenges of the International Peasant Movement.
It is a context marked by a worsening of the geopolitical conflict and an imperialist offensive that attacks progressive governments and criminalizes popular movements, promoting coups and discrediting mass leaders with a mechanism of coordinated work between the military branch, judicial procedures and mass media in violation of democratic systems and of human rights. The United States has launched a dangerous attack to resume domination over Latin American territory and to submit the national states to their geopolitical and economic interests, causing hunger and poverty, unleashing a new stage of the cultural war that seeks to naturalize fascist hatred and discrimination. Millions of migrants have been forced to abandon their countries pushed by lack of opportunities. They are robbed of their right to migrate and subjected to all kinds of human rights violations at the borders of the empire.
The climate crises intensify under the development of industrial agriculture and the high levels of consumptions of the countries that call themselves the first world.
This is the context of the new wars of oppression and conspiracy against the governments for the peoples, particularly against Cuba, Nicaragua, Bolivia and Venezuela, the incarceration of Lula and the prosecution of Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, among others. We declare our solidarity with the people of Venezuela on with all the peoples engaged in the struggle.
We reject the criminalization of men and women social fighters and demand the freedom of the political prisoners in all the continent.
We reject patriarchy, racism, sexism and homophobia. We fight for democratic and participatory societies, free of any exploitation, discrimination, oppression, or exclusion for women and the youth. We condemn all forms of domestic, social, occupational, political, economic, psychological and institutional violence against women.
Peasant and popular feminism is part of our strategic horizon. It strengthens the peasant struggle and the construction of socialism. With Feminism we Build Socialism.
The participation and prominence of the youth in the Congress and in our organizations solidify our struggles and ensure their continuity.
We celebrate the fact that after 17 years of struggle the United Nations has decided to approve and adopt the Declaration on the Rights of Peasants, now a legal and strategic tool for our struggles. We recognize the important part played by our comrade Evo Morales, with the work and commitment of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, in ensuring a comprehensive and participatory process in the heart of the UN that made it possible for the declaration to reach an international consensus.
We ratify our commitment of permanent and unyielding solidarity with the Cuban revolution. We condemn the exacerbation of the economic war, the escalation of the inhumane illegal and immoral genocidal blockade enforced for almost 60 years on the Cuban people. We also condemn the total application of the Helms-Burton law by the current US administration and demand the termination of this policy.
We reaffirm our commitment to fight for and demand compliance with the proclamation approved on the second summit of the CELAC in Havana, regarding declaring Latin America and the Caribbean a zone of PEACE. Likewise, we demand the Colombian state to fulfil all peace agreements and negotiations.
We demand the respect of and non-interference in internal affairs and the self-determination of the peoples of Latin America, and in that context, we reaffirm our commitment with the people of Puerto Rico and their struggle against colonization.
We commit to the task of examine with critical self-analysis the causes behind the fall and setback of the progressive governments to strengthen ourselves and reverse the current power relations in the continent.
We continue onwards down the path set in Havana in 2009, fostering a process of debate reflection and synthesis based on the historical memory of our struggles against colonization and brutality waged by our peoples for over 500 years, the independence movements, the struggles for liberation, the classical theoretical contributions and socialist experiences, as well as the current contributions of Latin American scholars, with the certainty that our proposal is neither replica nor copy, but rather a creation fit for the class struggle in our historic moment.
We ratify that our action plan should prioritize base work and popular organization, political and ideological education and the development of popular communication to be able to confront agri-business and the privatization of seeds, to be able to move towards territories free of financial capital, GMOs and toxic agrochemicals, where agroecological production may shape Food Sovereignty respecting Mother Earth.
All of us, men and women, have agreed that to build the socialist model we long for, our main challenge is to achieve the unity of all left and revolutionary forces in each country and the continent as well as making progress in an increased coordination of social movements and left-wing political parties to guarantee the accumulation of forces and break the neoliberal hegemony raising the flag of integration of the peoples and the construction of the Patria Grande, with more solidarity and internationalism.
The VII Congress of the CLOC that drew to a close today (June 30, 2019) constitutes a starting point, from our organizations, countries and the continent, to turn the slogan that guided this process into a reality:
“From our territories, unity, struggle and resistance for socialism and the sovereignty of the peoples.”
Long live the Unity of the People!
Long live Solidarity and brotherhood among the People!
Hasta la victoria siempre!