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Peasants, indigenous, black and women organizations are drafting proposals for an agrarian reform in Latin America, towards food sovereignty.
Nearly 120 social, peasant, rural and women organizations have been working from Monday in the Brazilian capital in a meeting that will set the basis and voluntary guidelines on land and natural resources to be submitted before the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
The demand for an integral agrarian reform that includes and exceeds the massive land distribution, a change in the technological framework to achieve real food sovereignty, education in the rural areas and the installation of self-managed agroindustries, are some of the main goals to be developed as discussed in the first tier of activities.
The event is called Regional Conference of Social Organizations, Social Movements and NGOs on Voluntary Guidelines for Land Ownership and Natural Resources, and it takes place at the headquarters of the National Confederation of Agricultural Workers of Brazil (CONTAG).
The chair of the local organization, Alberto Broch, and representative of the Latin American Coordinatior of Rural Organizations (CLOC- Via Campesina) opened the event, together with the Brazilian Minister of Rural Development Guilherme Cassel and the Coordinator of the Committee for Food Sovereignty for Latin America, Mario Ahumada, from Chile.
After three days of deliberations, the delegates from 20 countries will draft a political position document with specific proposals of the social movements, to be submitted at the FAO’s consultation meeting to be held in the office of the Brazilian Foreign Ministry, Itamaraty.
The opening addresses highlighted the current advance of capitalism to control and exploit natural resources, land and biodiversity. They understand that this exceeds the “peasant issue”.
The representative of CLOC and the Rural Landless Workers Movement emphasized that the international agency called an assembly to acknowledge the existence of billions of people who suffer hunger in the world, which is the result of the agriculture and development model imposed by the capitalist system.
Then, the representative of the Brazilian government said the meeting is part of “the creation of a post neoliberal agenda” where the peoples goals for their development and to overcome capitalism are set. In his opinion the neoliberal paradigm has been left behind, especially in Latin America.
Meanwhile, Mario Ahumada highlighted the importance of having achieved a real participation of the organizations as a way to influence on FAO’s actions, so there will be a consultation in Africa (Burkina Faso) and in Europe (Rome).
Ahumada said the problem of hunger in the world is not the result of food production per se, but of how food is produced and distributed globally.
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