Listen to the clamour of your people

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The emerging history of our peoples is like underground rivers which are joined by others and at a certain moment converge on the main stream and emerge at the surface. They change course, transforming reality and life. We are in that historic stage of transforming the reality imposed on us of domination, of the one-dimensional thinking of neo-liberalism, of cruelty against our peoples, of pitiless looting of resources, of the destruction of biodiversity, of making vassals out of autochthonous peoples, of increasing poverty and the continuous violations of human rights. The Peoples’ Summit III is a space for reflection, for proposals for continental building and unity, in defense of the right of Peoples to their sovereignty, for cultural identity and self-determination. It promotes the need for social and structural change, based on the cultural diversity and the unity of our peoples at a continental level, as well as on the rejection of domination. Many of the bad things which our peoples suffer could not happen without the complicity of governments that submit to the policies imposed by the IMF, the World Bank and the government of the United States. Policies like FTAA and other free trade agreements; the militarization of the continent and the establishing of U.S. military bases in our countries; the Puebla-Panamá plan, Plan Colombia, and the entry of North American troops as in the case of Paraguay, where they are also installing an office of the FBI - to control the Triple Frontier and to generate tensions and conflicts with the people of Bolivia and the entire region. Within this escalation of domination, Haiti has been one of the main axes of military imposition since foreign troops were sent in by the U.N., with a total of 7,400 military troops in the poorest country of the continent. Amongst the military forces are soldiers of Latin American countries which have endorsed the coup d’etat. Haiti does not need armed forces but rather doctors, teachers, technical teams for life and development. The 3rd Peoples’ Summit will surely reject the continuing threats and attempted coups d’etat against the government of Hugo Chávez Frías, President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. In the same spirit, it will reject and denounce the blockade of more than 45 years’ against the sister people of Cuba, unilaterally imposed by the U.S., in violation of resolutions of the United Nations on the rights of the Cuban people to their sovereignty and self-determination. It will denounce the policies of the IMF, the World Bank and other multilateral institutions that seek to impose their projects of privatization and External Debt on the countries of Latin America; a debt that is illegitimate, immoral and unjust and has already been paid-off many times over. These policies oblige us to continue paying, including the most impoverished and needy countries like Haiti, thus generating more hunger, destruction and social exclusion. It will denounce as well the governments that have negotiated bilateral agreements with the U.S. that will lead to bankruptcy for small and medium-sized producers, both rural and industrial, as a consequence of that country’s subsidies to its producers, thus provoking more hunger, poverty and social exclusion. It would be important for the 3rd Peoples’ Summit to also call for the immediate investigation of crimes against humanity committed by U.S. President, George W. Bush, British Prime Minister, Tony Blair, and Italian President, Silvio Berlusconi, responsible for the invasion and massacre of the peoples of Iraq and Afghanistan. And there should be an investigation of the situation at the U.S. military base in Guantánamo, Cuba, where they torture, murder and subject prisoners to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment, which offends humanity. Today the great power wants to endorse the atrocities committed in violation of international Agreements and Protocols and resolutions of the United Nations, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The U.N. should act before it is too late, to avoid worse damage to humanity. It is necessary and urgent that the OAS as a continental body initiate a profound reform of its structure. It should act on a fair and equal basis and not under pressure from the U.S., putting itself at the service of our peoples. The organizations and social movements that will meet in the 3rd Peoples’ Summit reject all types of terrorism, wherever they may come from. We call for our right to self-determination and sovereignty. We call upon our governments to be coherent and united throughout the continent, strengthening regional alliances to jointly find solutions to the serious problems that affect the life of our peoples, such as the continuing concentration and foreign takeover of our wealth, the looting and expropriation of our resources, and the commercialization of everything, including life itself. Too often, the only response that governments have in the face of social demands and protests is repression; from the 3rd Peoples’ Summit, we call for and we demand that they be at the service of the peoples and not financial capital, which they favour over human capital and the rights of peoples. Listen to the clamour of our Peoples! who day-by-day emerge with greater force and continental unity to take responsibility for our own lives as builders of our own history. Translation: Donald Lee
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