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The “Anti-imperialistic and Anti-colonialist Summit for Peoples’ Sovereignty, International Treaties and Human Rights” began on Wednesday in Cochabamba, Bolivia. The event was organized by social movements and organizations of Bolivia.
The aim is to back Evo Morales’ government after the Bolivian presidential plane that took off in Moscow, Russia, was denied entry in French, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese air space on July 3rd, under the pretext that US National Security Agency (NSA) former contractor Edward Snowden was aboard the plane.
The former official had leaked information about the NSA’s surveillance program. The Bolivian plane got authorization from Austria to land in its capital city, Vienna, since it was impossible to stop in the other European countries.
“We shall not remain silent. We have rights, and this is an aggression against Latin America”, said Morales in a phone statement published by the Bolivian public broadcasting service before landing in Vienna almost a month ago. The Bolivian President then called the European countries to have a different attitude to that of the empires: “If they want to intimidate us, they should think again”.
Real World Radio interviewed Katu Arkonada, of the Network of Intellectuals in Defense of Humanity, of the Basque country. He is a member of the organizing team of the summit in Cochabamba.
The meeting was called by the Confederation of Indigenous Peoples of Bolivia (CIDOB), the National Federation of Peasant Women, the Indigenous Women Bartolina Sisa and the National Council of Ayllus and Markas del Qullasuyu (CONAMAQ).
Yesterday there was an opening act that ended with a speech by Bolivian vicepresident, Alvaro Garcia Linera, who explained the motivation for the meeting: “it is anti-imperialistic, anti-colonialist and anti-capitalist”, as Arkonada cited for Real World Radio.
The activist said the main issues to be dealt with during the Summit are: political sovereignty, with special focus on the role played by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and its influence in Latin America; economic sovereignty, which focuses on the role of “this very neoliberal alliance” called the Pacific Alliance; territorial sovereignty, decolonization and anti-imperialism; international treaties and human rights; surveillance and information sovereignty. A sixth topic was included on Thursday “communications counteroffensive”.
“One of the main input that is coming out of the debates is the reference to the aerial kidnapping, the shame”, said Arkonada. “We are waiting for a final declaration, but there is clear support to President Evo Morales as leader of international social movements”, he added.
A two-and-a-half year process of work which resulted in a meeting with several thousand Brazilian peasants; “a process that didn´t start now, and that won´t end here”, said Itelvina Massioli, national leader of the peoples´ struggle for land, agrarian reform and food sovereignty, in interview with Real World Radio after the 6th Congress of the Landless Rural Workers Movement (MST).
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