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A meeting in Colombia which aimed to “give visibility to the numerous effects of war in the lives of women and the peoples”, by building proposals for peace in Latin America, came to an end on Monday.
The event was called “Meeting of women and peoples of the Americas against militarization”, and was organized by the Social Movement of Women against War and for Peace, The World March of Women, Via Campesina, the Procesos de Comunidades Negras and the Union Sindical Obrera, among other organizations and movements.
A press release issued by the organizers states: “the militarization of territories has resulted in the loss of sovereignty, autonomy, and self-determination of peoples, becoming a threat to the continent. A project of death is expanding through military occupations of the territory with US military bases in Colombia and other countries, as a military tool for political, economic, and social control”.
"Historically, military bases have been used to invade strategic territories for their geopolitical location and natural resources, which are often inhabited by ancient peoples, afro-descendants and peasants. These military bases also promote prostitution, with the operation of official houses that serve as ’entertainment’ to the soldiers, but for women, they represent sexual slavery and other forms of violence, including murders of women."
For these reasons, women from different organizations and movements were invited to participate in this meeting, which started on August 16th, aiming at their mobilization for life, autonomy and sovereignty of their bodies and territories.
“We call regional and world networks who fight for a dignified life to continue working together, building on previous meetings, and against military bases in the continent, against militarization, to strengthen this initiative and the existing proposals towards a more balanced and fair world”, reads the press release. “We call our friends to participate and support our common struggle for a way out of the social and armed conflict suffered by our country, and to raise our voices against US military bases in Colombia and the rest of the continent”.
At the closing ceremony, a public action was carried out in which over three thousand women from 18 Latin American and European countries participated. They travelled from Barrancabermeja to Palanquero military base, located in Puerto Salgar municipality in Cundinamarca.
There, the women read a statement about militarization and there were different artistic performances.
Photo: Minga Informativa de Movimientos Sociales
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