Peasants from around the world are valiantly defending biodiversity and protecting their inherent right to save seeds at COP 8 in Curitiba, Brazil. The members of La Via Campesina have staged protests, marches and a silent vigil to express their rejection of Terminator technology, also referred to as GURTs (Genetic Use Restriction Technology).
GURTs was brought to the plenary at COP 8 on March 23, 2006. Countries, alliances of countries, peasants, indigenous peoples, youth and NGO’s strongly supported the de-facto moratorium of Terminator technology by rejecting language to test GURTs on a case by case basis. Despite the large majority supporting the moratorium, the negotiators from a small number of countries including Australia, New Zealand, the United States and Canada, continued to work towards ending the moratorium by allowing case by case research of Terminator technology. Opening the door and allowing countries to define what case by case risk assessment of GURTs is means that the countries pushing for the end to the de facto moratorium will move Terminator out into field trials contaminating the environment and moving towards the end of biodiversity. Continued research into a technology that will increase world hunger by preventing millions of the poorest people in the world from saving their own seeds is nothing short of continuing research into methods of genocide. Terminator technology violates peasants’ basic human right to life.
This morning (24/3/2006) we and also the peasant around the world are happy when we learned that the article insisted the terminator was dropped. This is the victory of the struggles of La Via Campesina and other social movement that we have been working during the COP and MOP meeting and also the victory of peasant around the planet. Peasant is defending their local seed and biodiversity from the multi national and big agribusiness seed companies.
We win the struggle and we continue our struggle. Seed should be on the hand of peasant and it is the cornerstone to assert food sovereignty.