The reports of WPC President Socorro Gomes and General Secretary Thanassis Pafilis are as follows:
Political report – Socorro Gomes, President of WPC
We meet here in Guantánamo in a year full of challenges and threats to the world’s peoples, to security and to international peace. Imperialism always excels by imposing oppression and war, but people continue to demonstrate its commitment to resistance and struggle. Therefore, our meetings are marked by strong commitments and critical assessments of the context in which we find ourselves, and the paths we follow.
We want, first of all, to very sincerely thank the Cuban Movement for Peace and Sovereignty of Peoples, MovPaz, for organizing our meetings. Their role and efforts are extremely important and its very symbolic for us to meet here in the revolutionary island, and express our solidarity with the Cuban people in their ongoing struggle for socialism.
Our participation in the International Seminar for Peace and the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases demonstrates the persistence of issues like this in our agenda of struggles. Guantanamo is still occupied by the US in its pernicious affront to the sovereignty of the Cuban people, as most Latin American countries and many others throughout the world.
Cuban victories are accumulating, and solidarity with this brave and resilient people is renewed and intensified. The release of the five Cuban heroes and the resumption of diplomatic relations with the United States are important steps in this new phase. We remain committed to the demand for an end to the criminal blockade of the revolutionary island and the immediate withdrawal of the US military base at Guantanamo.
The year 2015 brings essential occasions for reflection and assessment of the course of history that unites us against war and imperialism. Celebrating the great victory of resistant peoples against Nazi-Fascism, we honor the victims of the horrendous crimes against humanity, the US atomic bombing of Japan; we mark the determined path of the World Peace Council in its 65 years of committed struggle; we evaluated the 70 years of the United Nations and the role it has yet to fulfill, as an instrument of sovereign peoples and nations in the defense of world peace and international law; we denounce the nefarious survival and disproportionate growth of the imperialist war machine, NATO; and we reiterate our demand for the immediate abolition of nuclear weapons, reaffirming the Stockholm Appeal, among other central issues of our agenda.
The World Peace Council welcomes with great joy the Palestinian flag raising in front of the UN headquarters, while we note with deep concern and rejection the escalation of violence and the increasingly brutal actions of the Zionist occupation of Palestinian territories. The repetition of this fatal and unacceptable cycle is due to the persistent impunity of the Zionist government for war crimes committed on a daily basis against the valiant Palestinian people and the alliance of the United States, supporting a regime of oppression and threat against the peoples of the region, also monopolizing a fake “peace process” that for two decades has favored the occupation.
The Middle East is plunged into chaos created by the imperialist policy of interference, “proxy wars” and the boost to the myriad of armed groups and terrorists that plague the region. The war in Syria enters its fifth year, with more than 240,000 dead and millions of refugees seeking to escape violence in neighboring countries, or through inhuman crossings to Europe and the rest of the world. They get to their destinations after losing relatives along the way to face xenophobia in countries’ policies directly responsible for their unsafe condition, subject to the militarization imposed by these powers.
Refugees who go to Europe in search of shelter face often inhumane treatment and unsafe clandestine crossings. Only from January to October 2015, more than 3,000 people lost their lives while technocracies discuss the numbers and the bounds of their “good will” towards them. This is a trend, however. Since 2000, according to the International Organization for Migration, more than 22,000 people have died trying to reach Europe and thousands more have died trying to cross the border between Mexico and the United States. This also includes immigrants fleeing extreme poverty, especially in Africa, subject to the neo-colonialist policies of the great powers, whether through war against Libya, Mali, Democratic Republic of Congo and Central African Republic, or through imperialist relations of exploitation. The African people continue to push forward their struggle for human dignity, but also the continent is also scene of unimaginable challenges to overcome war, in which the powers have a central and destructive role.
The condition of many Yemenis, Iraqis, Kurds, Afghans, Lebanese, Palestinians and Syrians is also a result of the strategy of building the “new Middle East”, by installing regimes allied to the imperialist agenda in a rich and diverse region politically and culturally, and also strategic in terms of energy resources, as we know. Terrorism makes there and also among Muslims the main victims, but the Islamophobic answers have become institutionalized in centers of power.
We express our deep sorrow for attacks like those perpetrated in Paris a few days ago and we express our most sincere solidarity with the French people in their pain. Terrorism is a cruel, unjust and brutal method since its main target are innocent people. Still, the selective wave of solidarity in the world has been revealing, while another bombing in Beirut also killed dozens of people, of which little or nothing was reported. The war is already supposed to be “normalized” to some, as well as death and violence, and that is unacceptable. All peoples want peace.
Moreover, as the responses of the French government and its role in the conflict in Syria have shown, the fight against terrorist groups – many sprouted by the empire – is used for the attack on the democratic rights of their own citizens or immigrants in the country, or even to justify criminal bombings promptly ordered by François Hollande, supposedly against targets of the “Islamic State” in Syria, without permission from the Syrian government. At the same time, the meeting in Austria, although it included an important regional actor like Iran, proposed discussing the future of the Syrian people without the presence of the elected government. The imperialist powers insist on excluding a central actor to continue to flagrantly violate Syrian sovereignty.
We also follow with concern the news of the provocation by the United States in the South China Sea, where the regional territorial dispute should be resolved only through dialogue between the parties concerned. The United States insists on trying to control the situation through its regional allies, particularly Japan, which boosts a constitutional amendment to increase its military sector against the will of the people. Again, the empire works for regional destabilization.
This also remains the case in Eastern Europe, since the fascist coup in Ukraine and the spread of NATO military presence in Russia’s neighborhood. For this type of activity, the World Peace Council and its members should strengthen their actions for the immediate dissolution of this threatening and anachronistic war machine. The important initiatives of the Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation, INTAL and the US Peace Council should be reinforced by the WPC and disseminated systematically, taking a well-deserved place among our priorities. The actions among the masses and the coordinated struggle for the dissolution of NATO are instrumental and can certainly mobilize the population.
As we know, NATO was born as an aggressive alliance; its survival is unsustainable and aims to harass people. Its military spending is a direct plunder of the resources of their own people to sustain the threat against other peoples around the world. In 2010, when faced with a devastating international crisis that put millions of people into unemployment and even poverty, attacking the social rights of workers, while benefiting the global banking, NATO member states spent 3.3% of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) combined, US $ 1.1 trillion, and 1.1% of its workforce, on war.
In 2014, according to the Stockholm International Peace Reseach Institute (SIPRI), 34% of the world spending in the military sector were the US’, nearly three times more than the second largest expense, China, with 12%. The 2006 decision between NATO members on the commitment of 2% of each country’s GDP for this war machine indicates a militarized order, the threat of war and the misuse of the peoples of resources for violence. The European NATO members spent that year $ 250 billion at the expense of economic and social rights achieved after much struggle by their people. In addition, the militarization of the planet is a central theme on our agenda and we must keep it alongside the more pressing issues for us.
Therefore, the mobilization against the NATO military maneuvers in Portugal, Italy and Spain were crucial to draw the public’s attention. The mobilization of heavy weapons, warships, thousands of troops and even nuclear weapons was an affront to the peoples in a show of force and a hateful exercise to keep the world threatened and “deterred” from challenging the empire’s hegemony.
In his 2014 annual report, the new NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg renewed the tone on strengthening the alliance and on “security threats” to justify its brutality. In September 2014, NATO defined the “Readiness Action Plan” which, according to Stoltenberg, is the “most significant strengthening of NATO’s collective defense since the end of the Cold War,” forecasting alliances with countries outside the bloc. To do this, NATO must adapt its “strategic military posture” increasing its Reaction Force – a multinational force – to include almost immediate responses “to the periphery of NATO territory,” This was the force tested in maneuvers in Portugal, Italy and Spain.
NATO’s bellicose dive keeps mobilizing against “extremism” in the Middle East and to face Russia in its own neighborhood, keeping Ukraine and Montenegro, among others, under their radar. During his visit to Montenegro, on October 14, Stoltenberg evaluated the reforms in the country
as “essential” to its membership application to the warmonger alliance, but urged the government to “consolidate public support” for that step. Protests brutally suppressed a few days later in the Montenegro’s capital, however, showed that the path taken was far from consensual to the country’s population.
The World Peace Council reaffirms, in growing alarm, our determined position in demanding the immediate and complete abolition of nuclear weapons, demanding an end to the logic of blackmail that threatens all humanity. The Stockholm Appeal remains current. The deliberately innocuous and lengthy negotiations between the nuclear powers at the Review Conference of the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) this year ended void especially because of Israel’s position and the United States, which made clear their diresgard for nuclear disarmament and peace.
We will never forget the survivors of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki 70 years ago, perpetrated by the United States, which remains unpunished by these terrible crimes against humanity, after inaugurating the use of horrendous weapons of mass destruction. Similarly, we stand in solidarity with the struggles of the Marshall Islands and other places affected by the nuclear tests conducted by the powers. Moreover, in our fight against all weapons of mass destruction, we also affirm our solidarity with the people of Vietnam, demanding recognition of the responsibilities of the United States by the use of Agent Orange against populations in largely civilian areas, still facing the horrible consequences this chemical weapon. Therefore, global disarmament is inherent in the construction of peace, international cooperation and a system of solidarity, justice and humanity.
Similarly, foreign military bases remain central in our daily denunciation of imperialism and of its frontal attack on national sovereignty. We must strengthen our struggle for the elimination of foreign military bases as expressions of an international order of domination and threat. We stand decidedly against this bellicose and aggressive logic.
Therefore, we advocate the strengthening of structures still essential to our struggle, both for the unity of the anti-imperialist movements of which we are part, and for the crucial and urgent reform of the UN. If this is not met, the UN risks becoming increasingly illegitimate in the eyes of the people. Its instrumentalization by the empire, which holds the monopoly on the use of force and coercion through the Security Council, risks the design and consolidation of a system of peace, justice and cooperation. It is therefore essential to equip itself with more democracy and representation, and real commitments to the principles of the UN Charter, which are so dear to us.
An example of historic commitments to be met, among many, is the process of decolonization of the world. When the UN was created, national liberation movements gained strength in their struggles for independence. Sovereignty, self-determination, human rights and justice seemed to define the future of the world after the war, and we would move forward, reassured by a structure based on these commitments. Still, in our agenda remains the struggle against this retrograde forms of domination, colonialism and occupation. This is the case of Western Sahara, Palestine, Puerto Rico, French Guiana, Falkland Islands and many others. We join them in their heroic struggle of resistance against domination.
Dear friends and comrades,
As we celebrate the great victory of the peoples against Nazi-Fascism in World War II, with the important mobilization for the 70th anniversary of the Victory, we honor the brave resistance in defense of humanity. Therefore, we denounce with deep concern the resurgence of fascist forces charging against the progressive movements around the world, including in Europe.
Allied to the offensive and repressive policies of the right in Europe and in Latin America, under the pretext of fighting political or economic crises, entities that present themselves as democratic and liberal reveal their authoritarian faces in the blunt attack against the workers.
Moreover, in a global context marked by the escalation of war and aggression against the sovereignty of nations, Latin America is under attack from conservative forces seeking to reverse the victories of democratic integration, sovereign, solidarity and the pursuit of the region to consolidate itself as a zone of peace. This offensive can not be underestimated, and the role of imperialism can not be ignored.
We reaffirm our commitment to defend the Bolivarian Revolution in Venezuela and our unwavering solidarity. Bolivarian Venzuela has also become a banner of struggle of all Latin American peoples and a reference to the anti-imperialist struggle.
We should also emphasize the development of a complex and tortuous process, the peace negotiations between the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Colombian government. Peace in Colombia is one of the key demands of the popular, democratic, patriotic and anti-imperialist social movements in Latin America, including FARC themselves. If materialized, it will be a victory of these forces and a defeat for the militarists, fascists, paramilitaries, drug dealers and other agents of imperialism in Colombia and Latin America.
We face important challenges and tasks. Next year we will hold the World Peace Council’s Assembly. Its preparation is also a moment for reflection, struggle and renewed efforts by the democratic and peace-loving forces all over the world. We have important struggles to strengthen and broaden, such as the campaign for the elimination of foreign military bases, the abolition of nuclear weapons, NATO’s dissolution, among others, which we have, more than ever, to reaffirm our solidarity with the peoples resisting in Puerto Rico, Palestine, Western Sahara, Syria and Iraq.
The urgency of these struggles also lead us to the urgency of strengthening the WPC until our next meeting. We look foraward to see all of you in Brazil with joy and enthusiasm, certain that our joint work will strengthen our struggles against oppression, war and imperialism, for peace among all peoples.
Thank you very much,
Report of the General Secretary Thanassis Pafilis
to the Executive Committee, Guantanamo/Cuba 20-21 November 2015
Dear comrades and friends
It is with great pleasure to address the Executive Committee of the WPC this time in the Cuban island of the revolution and particularly in Guantanamo, the Cuban province which is just a few kilometres away from the US military Base and concentration camp, which is being illegally used and “occupied” by the USA.
We salute the Cuban Movement for Peace and Sovereignty of the Peoples (MOVPAZ) and thank them for their disposition to serve as host of the Executive Meeting and of the important IV. International Seminar against Foreign Military bases the coming days.
We reiterate our solidarity with the Cuban people in the defence of the achievements of their Revolution and for the demand of the shutdown of the Guantanamo base and the return of the territory to Cuba, along with the end of the criminal US blockade which has caused uncountable damage to the Cuban people, the ‘Common Position” of the EU against Cuba and other interference against the will of the Cuban people.
We salute, one year after the return of the “Cuban Five”, all our friends in Cuba and we are glad that the five Cuban peace fighters are back to their fatherland.
Since the last Executive Committee held in Goa/India in November 2014 and the meeting of the Secretariat in Istanbul in June 2015 the WPC and its member organisations developed in dozens of countries actions and initiatives against the imperialist aggressiveness, the mechanisms of imperialist domination and exploitation, actions for peace in solidarity with the people under aggression, occupation and threats.
The global developments in the world are increasingly characterized by the growing aggressiveness of imperialism, its internal antagonisms under the light of the deep capitalist economic crisis for more than six years now. The global capital, the multinational corporations and monopolies are intensifying with the cooperation of the willing governments their attack on workers’ rights, social security and welfare, trying to shift the consequences of the crisis to the shoulders of the working masses, the self employed, small peasants, the pensioners and the youth. There is growing poverty and extreme poverty in previously high developed and industrialized capitalist countries, with the marginalization of new masses, huge rates of unemployment, phenomena of hunger, malnutrition and desperate suicide rates. At the same time the profits of the big capital, the enterprises and monopolies are growing, despite the smaller rates in comparison to the past.
We would like here to explicitly underline the relevant ‘Open Letter’ of the US Peace Council of 10th October 2015, as a comprehensive paper describing the US war drive and the eminent dangers for a generalized war in the world due to the imperialist plans of the USA and its allies and the escalation of rivalries in many parts of the world. It is describing as well the strategy of the US administration, which has never changed and is aiming to secure its domination over death and destruction of humanity
Despite the economic crisis of the system, huge amounts are being still spent for military expenditure. According to the SIPRI institute in 2014 1.776 billion USD was spent for military purposes. 610 Billion USD by the USA, with a small decrease, due to budget deficit control measures. A huge increase is being noted in the Gulf region Middle East. Military Expenditure is growing in Eastern Europe drastically. All the above are helpful for the war industries and the weapons exports pushing up further the profits of the enterprises feeding and providing tools and weapons for the murderous imperialist aggressions and plans worldwide.
One small part of the global military expenditure would be enough to deal and cover with all hunger and misery in the world, with curable diseases and underdevelopment globally. It is with great concern to note that almost one third of the population of earth is living below or at the margins of poverty, especially in Africa, parts of Asia and recently in the Middle East. In several European Countries more than 25% of population lives below poverty line, as a new phenomenon of the economic crisis. The austerity programs jointly approved and applied by the governments, the EU and IMF are deregulating and smashing all workers and social rights are creating new masses of impoverished people.
We state with deep concern that the situation in regards to peace and stability is deteriorating in various parts of the world, due to increasing actions of the imperialist forces and their allies in particular in the Middle East, where the plans for a “New Middle East” are creating new sufferings and misery to the peoples of the region, but also in Eastern Europe where the USA, the EU and NATO are deploying from the Baltic States till Bulgaria tens of thousands or troops along with the “Missile Defence Shield” in order to expand their geo-strategic influence towards Russia and the Ukraine, where after the orchestrated Coup in 2013 a reactionary government has been installed with the support of neo-fascist forces. We express our solidarity with the anti-imperialist and progressive forces in the Ukraine and denounce the attacks against the population and cities in the eastern part of the country (Donbass) and the “witch hunting” organized by the government though legal cases aiming at the illegalisation of the Communist Party of Ukraine.
As WPC we denounce and condemn the recent military manoeuvres of NATO under the name “Trident Juncture 2015” as one of the biggest in NATO’s history in which more than 36.000 troops, 230 military units of land, air and sea along with 140 airplanes and 60 warships participate in Spain, Italy and Portugal. NATO proves once more to be the main global aggressor and armed tool of imperialism with the full support of the USA and the EU.
We salute in this context the multifaceted actions against NATO of the Peace Movement in Italy and Spain, but especially in Portugal by our member organisation CPPC. The WPC supports the struggle in each NATO member-State against the biggest war machinery of imperialism and the right of each people to withdraw from it along with the global demand for the dissolution of NATO. We salute likewise the protests organized in the Czech Republic and Georgia under this light.
The WPC shall plan and organize actions against NATO towards it next summit in July 8-9, 2016 in Poland.
As WPC we are extremely worried because of the growing military activities of the NATO in the Arctic. NATO aims to incorporate all the Nordic countries into its military exercises, membership and into the campaign of building up new enemies for the near future. The WPC supports the idea of a Arctic zone of peace and ecological sustainable environment against the exploitation by the oil multinationals and their profits.
We reaffirm our solidarity with the people of Cyprus which is for more than 40 years under partial occupation of 37% and express our concern about the right wing government that strengthens its bonds with the oil multinationals, the US, NATO and Israel along with reactionary monarchies in the Middle East. We reject a “solution” of the Cyprus issue converting Cyprus into a protectorate in order to serve the geostrategic and energy interests of the imperialists in the region having the people of Cyprus, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots as victims. The WPC reaffirms its position for a viable and just solution based on a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation, with one sovereignty, one citizenship and one international representation, with political equality as applied in the relevant UN Security Council resolutions on Cyprus.
We express our condemnation to the plans of the Greek government to install a new US military Base in the Aegean Sea (Island Karpathos) and to extend the US and NATO military operations besides the Souda Base (Air and Naval Base) also to other parts of the island of Crete with the plans to deploy Drones on Greek soil. These plans and the enhanced cooperation between Greece and Israel are involving Greece even more in the imperialist plans in the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East and are increasing the threats and dangers for the whole region.
This October 24th marked the 70 years from the foundation of the United Nations after the end of the World War II in 1945. The WPC believes that the principles of the UN Charter and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights are essential tools for movements tirelessly struggling for Peace among people who, as well as the World Peace Council, esteem the principles set forth in those documents as humanity’s common goals. Therefore, this is also very important to recall the abuse of the UN’s role today, its double moral towards just causes and its instrumentalization by the USA and other imperialists for their domination over the world.
We underline hereby that the consequences of imperialist domination are knocking ever harder at thei doors of all countries. US and EU imperialism reflected on the structure and the “strategic concepts” behind their war machine, NATO, has frequently run over the most essential principles established by the UN Charter. For the WPC the protection of human rights, sovereignty and self-determination cannot keep being privileges,pretexts or instruments for the promotion of military, criminal imperialist interventions.
The WPC honoured the anniversary of the 70 years from the criminal bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki this year with the participation in the World Conference against Atomic&Hydrogen bombs in August in Hiroshima where the firm principle positions of the WPC were expressed, for the complete abolition of all nuclear weapons and our solidarity with the Japanese peace movement and the Japan Peace Committee which is fighting against the change of the Article 9 of the Japanese constitution by the Japanese government, for the deployment of troops abroad. In dozens of countries events commemorating this anniversary were organized by WPC members and friends. At the same time the WPC highlighted the importance and relevance till today of the “Stockholm Appeal” which was launched by the WPC 65 years ago and which gathered hundreds of millions of signatures.
We paid tribute to the 70th anniversary of the Liberation of Korea and reaffirmed our support to the peaceful reunification of the Korean peninsula as well we denounced the military manoeuvres and threats of US imperialists and its allies against the Korean people.
The WPC stressed on 10th August, the International Day of victims of “Agent Orange”, its support to the victims and families of the US crime against humanity during the dirty war of the USA against Vietnam.
The World Peace Council congratulated the Nepal Peace and Solidarity Council and through that the Nepali people for the adoption of the New Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal, after many years of struggle of the Nepali people for the New Nepal. Likewise we congratulated the election of K.P. Sharma Oli for his election as Prime Minister as well as for the election of Bidhya Devi Bhandari as the first woman President of the country.
The situation in the Middle East is escalating dangerously. The concentration of military power of all means over the skies and on the ground of Syria and Iraq, τhe competition of imperialist forces and centres, are creating an explosive situation and threats for a generalized war for the sake of geo-strategical control of energy resources, pipelines and spheres of influence. The WPC calls upon the peace loving people of the world to be vigilant and mobilize forces in the respective countries against a new, this time “third World War”.
The WPC took clear positions, from the very first moment, in regards to the imperialist plan for a ‘new Middle East’, which is endorsed by the USA, the EU, its allies in the region by various means. The Islamic fundamentalist forces, for so many years tolerated and nurtured by the imperialists themselves, assumed new role with armed “holy warriors” in various countries, particularly in Iraq and Syria. The project of “ISIS” is the other side of the same coin of the imperialist agenda in the region. It is aiming in the control of spheres of influence and energy resources; it requires willing regimes and ignores any consequences for the peoples of the region. The hypocrisy and double moral is paramount. The crisis and instability created by the imperialists directly and indirectly through armed dijhadist groups, is being used now for new military operations and invasions. The “model” of Libya which was bombed and cut in pieces is the danger for Iraq and Syria. The WPC did never accept NATO’s or any other imperialist intervention under any pretext. We strongly believe that Syrian and Iraqi people are the sole responsible to decide about their path and leadership.
There cannot be any “humanitarian military intervention” by the ones who have slaughtered the same peoples. Special responsibility in all this is bearing the Turkish government, without which the plans in Syria would have not been able to be applied. The millions of refugees in Turkey and other neighbour countries is the tragic result of a plan to overthrow the regime in Damascus by multinational armed gangs entering mainly from Turkey, co-sponsored by the Gulf monarchies.
The WPC expresses its deep concern about the growing tendencies of religious fundamentalism in the region in all countries of the area as part of a plan to dilute peoples’ conscience whether through “brain washing” or through open terror, hiding at the same time the actual collaboration of those forces with the imperialists and their willing partners in the region.
Additional to the ongoing clashes and war in Syria and the region, humanity has witnessed one of the biggest refugee dramas in history. More than 3 million Syrian and Iraqi refugees are in all neighbour countries, but particularly in Turkey from where hundreds of thousands are trying for several months to cross the Aegean Sea towards Greece, having other European countries as their final destination. These refugees are the victims of the imperialist interventions who are running away for their lives. We can not imagine what drives a father and mother to put their children and babies in small overloaded boats, risking their life and often die in the sea or in front of the Greek islands or Turkish coasts. The Aegean Sea is becoming day by day a graveyard for hundreds of families from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, the Greek islands are converting into refugee camps, without the sufficient and adequate conditions to receive and host these people. Key issue in this tragedy remains the EU regulations of the Shengen and Dublin II agreements and the hypocrisy of the EU and many governments of countries the refugees are crossing through.
The truth is that as long as the USA, the EU and NATO are launching and carrying out wars in order to secure the interests of the monopolies for markets and energy resources in the region, as more and more refugees will be driven away from their homes, trying to safe their lives. The example of Afghanistan, 14 years after the invasion of the USA and NATO and the so-called war on terror, as well as the earlier support of the imperialists to the Talibans against the USSR and the People’s Republic then, has resulted into new waves of refugees from this country
The WPC expresses once more its sincere solidarity with the Syrian people and all peoples in the region; their suffering is big these days. The WPC has taken and will take initiatives together with our member organizations to uncover the plans and spread the truth about the real intentions behind the crisis. To confront the lies and hypocrisy of the corporate media controlled by the imperialists and rally forces around the anti-imperialist solidarity with the peoples.
We convey in particular our solidarity to the Syrian National Peace Council, our partner and member of the Secretariat, who we salute today here in Guantanamo.
The WPS takes note of the agreement between Iran and the West on the Nuclear issue and about the increasing role of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the region in order to ensure and promote its regional position. Nevertheless we express our concern about the call of the USA on the regime in Iran to play a “constructive” role in the US plans for a “New Middle East”, in particular in relation to the future of Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, to ensure the US vital interests, since the imperialists will not stop their efforts and interventions despite the agreement.
As we have mentioned several times in our meetings and documents the Palestinian issue constitutes a core-issue for the whole Middle East. We acknowledge positively the
acceptance of Palestine as a non-member State at the UN, although still the inalienable right of the Palestinian people for their State remains unaccomplished due to the ongoing occupation of the Palestinian territories by Israel which has launched recently a new escalation in its attacks on Palestinians in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem.
Till the beginning of November 2015 at least 70 Palestinians had been killed and over 7,200 others injured by Israeli forces since the beginning of the unrest in the West Bank and Jerusalem early October 2015. According to official figures released by the Ministry of Health of Palestine among the fatalities are 18 children; amounting to 26% of the total death toll. The youngest of all is two-year old. Whereas 50 Palestinians were killed in the West Bank, 19 others were killed in the Gaza Strip, including a pregnant woman. Some 2,200 Palestinians were injured with either live rounds, rubber-coated bullets, or by sustaining burns or being subjected to physical abuse during separate incidents in the occupied territories since the beginning of October. .
A total of 650 were injured with live-fire, while another 850 were injured with rubber-coated steel bullets. 200 others were subjected to physical assault by the Israeli settlers or armed soldiers.
The WPC stands firm on the side of the Palestinian people for the demand to end the occupation by Israel and for the establishment of a free, independent, viable and sovereign State within the borders before the 4th June 1967 and with East Jerusalem as its capital. We shall continue the actions and pressure on the governments of our countries to recognize Palestine under this light along with the recognition of Palestine as full member State no.194 at the UN.
We reaffirm our position for the release of all Palestinian prisoners from Israeli jails and the right for the return of all refugees to their homes according to the UN Resolution 194. We demand the abolition of the Separation wall of Israel in the West Bank and Jerusalem.
The WPC expresses its solidarity to the peace loving forces inside Israel who fight side by side with the Palestinian people for the end of the occupation in difficult conditions. We further want to stress our repudiation to the recent statement of the Prime Minister of Israel who shamelessly said that the Holocaust was an “instruction” of a muslim religious leader to Hitler, which is actually washing the crimes of the Nazis clean.
The WPC calls upon all its members and friends to highlight the solidarity with the Palestinian people on the 29th November, the International Day in solidarity with Palestine.
The WPC will continue fighting against the imperialist plans around the world. We emphasize here on the US “Pivot to Asia” where the USA is shifting 60% of its military power to the Asia&Pacific region and the bilateral and multilateral military agreements with many of the counties which are creating new threats to peace and stability in the area. We denounce the plans for the creation of new US military bases in Japan and support the initiatives of the Japanese Peace Movement against the “militarist comeback” of Japan in the framework of its cooperation with the USA.
We express our concern about the tensions in the area of the “South China Sea” and reaffirm our position that whatever disputed should be resolved by peaceful talks amongst all involved parties based on the UN Convention of the Law of Seas (1982). At the same time we denounce the recent US military presence in the region, which is offering its “good services” to various sides. The WPC expresses its discontent with dangerous nationalist tendencies in the region, which are not helpful for the peaceful and comprehensive solution.
In Africa the Inter-imperialist rivalries continue to afflict the African continent which the US-imperialist interests coming head-on against European Union, British, French, German and others -collectively and individually.
In Franco-phone Africa, French interests continue their hold on the political, social and economic lives of these countries without abetting. The ongoing economic uneven ties with the former colonizer have benefitted the metropole and disadvantaged the former colony. The imperialists do not hesitate to trigger wars where their interests are not pushing through. The UN and African Union are being used often to re-establish control through military intervention.
The rivalries also manifest in trade and finance matters. With China’s deep penetration in the continent, US and EU agreements with African countries have been threatened and rolled back. Thus a huge media and ideological offensive against China has been undertaken in a major campaign of disinformation.
The Islamic Fundamentalism continues to be major source of tensions on the continent and has a potential of wreaking havoc in the continent. That “Boko Haram” continues to exist and expand its operations north-eastern Nigeria also lies in the fact that there has been real tangible attempt to destroy Boko Haram, by the authorities. For some, using the spectre of political Islam to cow people into submission has been a tactic.
The migration problem has recently been brought to the attention of many people with the dead bodies of many refugees found in the coasts of countries in Europe. African migration to Europe in particular has been a problem for many years and racist attitudes have plagued much of the process. That many African youth migrate to Europe to escape poverty, war, unemployment and for a better life is proof of the internal problems as well as the imperialists policies in Africa, that still plague the continent.
The WPC is reaffirming its principle position for the right of the people of Western Sahara, the last colony on African soil, to decide upon its future in a free and democratic referendum.
Last but not least we would like to refer to the region which is hosting us here in Latin America. In the region where its peoples have suffered for decades’ long dictatorships and oppression, we express our solidarity to all the peoples struggling for their sovereign right to decide alone and free for their future and their path of development. A region which is getting inspired by the Cuban Revolution and its achievements and where important steps were achieved in various countries. Here we want to stress the important decision of the CELAC to declare in 2014 in its summit in Havana the region as a “Zone of Peace” which reflects the genuine feelings and aspirations of the vast majority of the population in the continent.
The final victory of the peoples of Latin America will depend on the confrontation and defeat of the rule of the domestic reactionary forces and capital, along with the imperialist interventions and interference. The WPC supports the strive of the peoples of Latin America to become the real masters of their wealth and of their fortunes.
In this context the WPC denounces and repudiates all attempts at imperialist interference in the internal affairs of Venezuela, including attempts to attack, subvert and remove the democratically elected Government. We acknowledge the progressive measures and achievements of the last 15 years for the people of Venezuela, as well as the challenges and the need to deepen the transformation process and confront the oligarchy and its power.
The Bolivarian Republic and the people of Venezuela have had to contend with a broad and open conspiracy involving the State Department of the US Government as well as of the European Union, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), USAID, the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) and its powerful Latin American media conglomerates, and the Venezuelan bourgeoisie and their “Opposition” political forces all these years.
In front of the coming Parliament elections on 6th December the WPC declares its solidarity with the anti-imperialist peace loving forces of Venezuela against the clear evidence that has emerged of an orchestrated and coordinated attack of reactionary external and domestic forces and elite to dilute the people’s will and determination.
The WPC expresses its solidarity to the people of Argentine to exercise their sovereign rights over the Malvinas islands and condemns the gross violation of it by the United Kingdom.
We support the right of the people of Puerto Rico, a US colony in the Caribbean Sea for its self-determination and freedom.
The WPC demands the withdrawal of all foreign military troops from Haiti.
The WPC acknowledges the steps achieved in the “Peace Talks” between the Colombian government and the FARC-EP in Havana for the final signing of a comprehensive Peace Accord, underlining as well the challenges and risks to secure the full guarantees for a political solution with justice and dignity for which the Colombian people fought for more than half century.
Dear friends and comrades
The WPC stood always firm towards the Cuban Revolution, its people and leadership. From Guantanamo we want to send once more our clear message of solidarity with the Cuban people, the brave people in Guantanamo province who are defending their inalienable right for sovereignty over the whole territory of Guantanamo. Time has reached where the USA cannot hide anymore behind cheap excuses. The Base and concentration camp has to shut down and the US troops have to leave Cuba!
Dear friends and comrades,
The WPC has developed these three years hundreds of actions and initiatives all over the world and despite the negative correlation of forces and the aggressiveness of imperialism we have contributed to the global peace movement and to the awareness of peoples with significant actions. We are looking forward to further strengthening the WPC in all continents marching towards our next Assembly, hopefully in Brazil in November 2016!