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(en) Declaration of 1st Meeting of Autonomous Latin-American Organisations

From "Chris R" <christopher@nodo50.org>
Date Wed, 5 Feb 2003 10:08:00 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

In Porto Alegre, Brazil there was more than just one forum.
There was a forum for the know-it-alls, for the famous, for
tourists, for NGO's, and then there was the forum of the
libertarians, environmentalists, grassroots organizations and
many other more. We don't know if all completed their
objectives, but we, the people that struggle day by day in the
streets, in the factories, in the fields, in the indigenous
communities, in the schools, in the neighbourhoods and in the
marginal areas, in the cooperatives, in short, in all the places
where the dreams of justice, fraternity, equality, solidarity,
mutual support, direct democracy are becoming real, we know
that we made steps towards what we had planned.

Waste collectors, university students committed to their people,
independent media workers, health workers, farmhands,
teachers, factory workers, syndicalists, all of them organized in
Resistencia Popular Gaucha (regional popular resistance group),
the People's University Collective, and Porto Alegre Indymedia
Centre made it possible for us to join together our experiences
and the libertarian expectations of our peoples.

After two days of respectful, fraternal debates, with all the
multicultural diversity of our peoples and of our organizational
traditions, through workshops of interchanges we arrived at the
following conclusions:

1. We define ourselves as social organisations guided by class
struggle and identity, as the first peoples of the continent, with
libertarian principles of grassroots activities, direct democracy,
solidarity among those at the bottom, popular struggles and
committed to the autonomy of those at the bottom and of first

2. We maintain autonomy against political parties, the state and
their governments, NGO's, companies, and of those who come
with authoritarian structures and unaware of our reality telling
us what we have to do.

3. We stand for autonomy because it is a tool to carry out our
dreams with.

4. We carry out political actions by the social organizations with
the participation of all to create a power that is our own.

5. We join our hands and strength to change the reality of
unemployment, hunger, illness and a numberless amount of
things and shortages, because we must have it clear that only in
this way can we beat the globalisation of the wealthy. For this
reason we should make a joint resistance to our shared
difficulties in our own way.

6. We create resistance through the principles and the cultural
traditions of our peoples in our own way.

Those at the top who now call themselves neo-liberals brought
and continue to bring about the privatisations, the external debt,
bad working conditions, violence and the destruction of the
principles, customs, traditions and natural resources: water,
forests, earth, medicinal herbs, animals, sun, air, etc. All of this
is already happening and it will be worse with the Free Trade
Agreement for America (FTAA).

The FTAA destroys the autonomy of the countries, creating a
territorial space for the rich of the world that turn domination
into a law that does not respect cultural borders nor the
sovereignty of our peoples.

The governments that govern with FTAA are negotiating the
lives of the peoples and they want to convince us that the FTAA
is good.

The Common Market of the South, MERCOSUR, is an alliance
of companies without borders and governments, and not a union
of the peoples. It is where the companies and the government of
Brazil impose themselves on the other peoples (Argentina,
Paraguay and Uruguay)

The United States, with the complicity of the governments of
each country, are filling our lands with soldiers, from Mexico to
Tierra de Fuego, to impose by force, their way of living and to
make us become dependent on everything. This is not the past,
this is happening today in the  Puebla Panama Plan, Plan
Colombia, the Alcantara military base in Brazil, the triple
Argentina-Brazil-Paraguay border, the "DIGNITY" plan of
Bolivia, among other examples.

The consequences of foreign debt in all our countries makes life
harder for the majority of us, while the same as always continue
to make a profit. One condition necessary for the peoples of
Latin America to advance, is the non-payment of the foreign
debt and its interests. After all, we did not create it.

Facing this common situation, we have agreed to unite, to create
actions and by means of direct action to struggle against the

a) Coordinating to speak, to discuss, and to analyse how the
FTAA affects us in our surroundings: factories, schools, trade
unions, houses, communities, neighbourhoods, etc.

b) Raising flags together and mutually supporting ourselves
according to our abilities.

c) Impelling a plebiscite or poll so that the people can decide if
they want the FTAA or not.

d) Using all that is within our reach, from our culture and means,
to inform on the effects of forms of resistance against the FTAA

e) Trying out forms of economy that are contrary to those
imposed by those above, generating independence from them
and based on solidarity.

As peoples and organizations in struggle, we believe that it is
possible to create structures and coordination in aspects such as
policies, tactics, training, and in finances to face the dangerous
enemy that is capitalist globalisation and its expression in
America, the FTAA. But we should combat it by building
practical and concrete alternatives, not just rejecting it.

To that end, we will coordinate activities of all types, we will
establish a communication network with all the means that are
available, from postal mail, newspapers, visits, and even a
website. Creating solidarity among ourselves is the central axis
in this beginning, ranging from simultaneous joint actions, to
support actions for sister organizations.

Finally, the participants in the First Latin-American Meeting of
autonomous organizations, those who are at the bottom, the
poorest, those with the colour of the earth, peasants, indigenous
people, workers, waste collectors, the unoccupied and the
excluded have, following the abovementioned conclusions,
resolved to call the Second Meeting of social, indigenous
organizations and of autonomous popular resistance, in Bolivia,
in the month of January of 2004. There we will intensify the lines
of action and the struggles of all the peoples, countries and

We desire that this document be widely distributed and be a
form of analysis that strengthens the actions of each one of our
organizations. We will meet again in Bolivia.

Down with those on top, up with those that fight!

Porto Alegre, Brazil, January 2003

Signing Organisations (accents removed)

*Comite de Resistencia Popular da Zona Leste, Porto Alegre, RS
*Comite de Resistencia Popular da Restinga, Porto Alegre, RS
*Comite de Resistencia Popular da Santa Isabel, Viamao, RS
*Comite de Resistencia Popular da Vila Pontilhao de Gravatai,
*Centro de Midia Independente de Porto Alegre, RS
*Coletivo pela Universidade Popular de Porto Alegre, RS
*Nucleo de Apoio ao Movimento dos Catadores, Porto Alegre,RS
*Movimento dos Catadores de Material Reciclavel, RS
*Setor independente do Sindicato dos Trabalhadores do
Judiciario Federal, Porto Alegre,R
*Setor independente do Sindicato dos Metalurgicos da Grande
Porto Alegre, R
*Setor independente do Sindicato dos Metalurgicos de Caxias do
Sul, RS
*Setor independente do Sindicato dos Trabalhadores em
Correios, Porto Alegre,RS
*Movimento de Cultura Popular, Itajai, Santa Catarina
*Resistencia Popular, Sao Paulo
*Resistencia Popular, Rio de Janeiro
*Forum de Luta pela Moradia da UFF, Rio de Janeiro
*Pre Vestibular Popular Apoio Mutuo, Rio de Janeiro
*Centro de Cultura Popular Unidos do Parque Georgia, Cuiaba,
Mato Grosso
*Coletivo pela Universidade Popular de Cuiaba, Mato Grosso
*Sociedade de Luta Popular de Goiania, Goias
*Movimento Boca do Lixo, Recife, Pernambuco
*Nucleo de Apoio a Reforma Agraria, Belem, Para

*Radio Comunitaria Germinal, Montevideo
*Ateneo del Cerro, Montevideo
*Ateneo de las Acacias, Montevideo
*Union de Trabajadores Acucareros de Artigas, Bela Union

*Red Tinku de Grupos Autonomos

*Movimiento de Unidad Popular

*Educacion Popular Germinal

*Consejo Indigena Popular de Oaxaca Ricardo Flores Magon

*Coletivo Foro Colombia

Africa do Sul
*Bikisha Media Collective


25th and 26th  January, 2003, Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil

Luciana - Secretary of Relations of the FAG
tel. + (51) 3211 2476 / 91484391
cx postal 5036 CEP 90040-970
Porto Alegre/RS/Brazil

Translation Red Libertaria Apoyo Mutuo
www.red-libertaria.net - internacional@red-libertaria.net

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