Condemn US aggression against Syria

CC-BY Alisdare Hickson on Flickr

Last Friday the US military launched 59 cruise missiles at Syria, striking the Shayrat airbase operated by the Syrian air force. Read the initial report from the SANA here. The strikes were announced as a response to an incident in the town of Khan Sheikhoun, where Syrian forces are accused of using chemical weapons. The incident has not yet been fully investigated, and the presumptive attack by the USA was deplored by Egypt, Iran, Russia.

Statements were released by a number of progressive & democratic organisations, most importantly the Syrian Communist Party (Bakdash) – “Shame on the American aggression” [21centurymanifesto, facebook, solidnet]

The Communist Party of Britain – “condemn US aggression in Syria” [21centurymanifesto, solidnet]

The World Peace Council – “on the missile attack of the USA against Syrian targets” [WPC website, Global Research]

Lastly, the Morning Star editorial the following Saturday identified the strikes as an ‘escalation of western involvement.’ [link]

Heart Of The Crisis

f4-turkey_syria-war

Navid Shomali explains the imperial power plays that have caused chaos in the Middle East – and still do

THE refugee crisis has become one of the key political issues facing Europe, including the rise of a racist backlash in most countries of the EU.

The spectre of tens of thousands of refugees criss-crossing borders from Turkey to Germany via Balkan countries has been effectively used for justifying unprecedented policy changes including draconian security and immigration measures across Europe and further afield.

The most bizarre aspect of this crisis is that it springs from the conflict in the Middle East — but is then used to justify further military intervention to reshape the map of the Middle East. Conflict in Syria is at the centre of policy-making with respect to the refugees’ crisis and has spread into rivalry between the West and Russia.

UN reports speak of over 4.7 million Syrian refugees in neighbouring countries desperate to seek a safe haven from war and terror.

However the complex political and humanitarian events and developments in and around Syria are not isolated from the macro strategic policies that shaped the US’s “Greater Middle East Plan” after the US intervention in Iraq in 2003. Condoleezza Rice, the US secretary of state in the Bush administration, in 2006 famously justified the war and violence in the region as “the birth pangs of a new Middle East.”

The policy to reshape the political landscape of Middle East initially drafted and implemented by the neocons was later elaborated and progressed by Obama’s administration.

To this mix Russia’s deepening involvement in the Middle East in recent years should be added. Russia’s direct engagement in the military conflicts in Syria is part of its wider plan to assert itself as a global player by using its military might in order to compensate for its economic weaknesses.

This will in turn protect Russia’s strategic influence in the region, which has for decades been targeted by the US and EU as an unrivalled gas and energy supplier and a source of massive deposits of rare minerals waiting to be tapped.

To fully appreciate the complex mix of factors giving rise to the crisis in the Middle East one needs to focus on a couple of strategic considerations by significant global actors. It is now accepted that since Barack Obama rose to the presidency of the US in January 2009, the US has gradually reduced its direct military presence in the Middle East to compensate for its militarisation of the Far East targeting China, which is seen as a major risk to the US’s hegemonic position as the single superpower.

Iraq and Afghanistan are two examples and the US has resisted deploying ground military units of any significance in Libya, Syria or in the effors to repulse Isis from Iraq.

Another consideration is Europe’s critical dependency on Russia’s oil and gas resources which provide a powerful leverage that Vladimir Putin has been exploiting against the EU.

Therefore maintaining direct influence on the Middle East’s flow of oil and gas would be a vital geopolitical component of US global hegemony and Russia’s strategic plan.

An influential document published in 1997 by the neoconservative think tank Project for the New American Century has been the blueprint for all US administrations, including Obama’s.

The Project’s main tenet is “to promote American global leadership,” ie to perpetuate US global hegemony as the single superpower.

Regardless of Obama’s softened foreign policy approach (in contrast to the neocons), the US political, military and business establishments have had to consider a new approach to perpetuate US global hegemony in light of changing economic realities.

This has forced the US to reconfigure its policy in the Middle East and how it utilises and manipulates the forces of political Islam — this is one of the key causes of the present humanitarian disaster in the Middle East. The roots of the humanitarian catastrophe in Syria are multidimensional, with political and economic implications spanning across the Middle East and internationally.

Since the turn of the century and for more than a decade Bashar alAssad’s autocratic regime had refused to abandon its neoliberal economic policies and implement effective economic and political reforms despite the growing pressure from different social strata, in particular from the urban middle classes and ethnic minorities.

Instead a series of economic restructuring measures were imposed with the usual devastating effect on the urban and rural populations.

On the eve of the Arab Spring of 2011, when a massive wave of awareness and uprisings for freedom and social justice was surging across the region, Assad’s secular autocratic rule was internally unpopular and isolated. Assad’s weakness and vulnerability was ruthlessly exploited as opportunity for external intervention by the reactionary Arab sheikhdoms and Western powers.

Saudi Arabia, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates deeply feared and opposed the Arab Spring and its potential for change and democratisation in the Arab world.

The possibility that the autocratic “client states” in the Middle East and North Africa could be replaced by national democratic states would have been a disastrous outcome of Arab Spring for both Arab reactionary rulers and the Western imperialist interests.

Therefore after the fall of dictators in Tunisia and Egypt the Arab Spring had to be subverted and ultimately halted at any costs before the popular movements would solidify across the region. Saudi Arabian forces invaded Bahrain and suffocated the popular movement for change there. Nato with the participation of Qatar and the UAE directly attacked Libya in March 2011.

The fall of Gadaffi’s regime in October 2011 created a predictable power vacuum which was quickly filled by Islamist forces, including al-Qaida. Libya soon descended into a massive tribal war, disintegration into competing powerful warlords and an ensuing humanitarian catastrophe.

In 2009, Syria received a USbacked proposal from Qatar for the construction of a pipeline — it would have stretched across Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Syria all the way to Turkey, to supply the EU. Qatar’s massive gas fields are adjacent to Iran’s South Pars gas fields.

But instead in 2012, Syria signed a memorandum of understanding with Iran worth $10 billion for a rival proposal, the so called “Islamic pipeline” that would have run across Iran, Iraq and Syria to Europe. This pipeline had Russia’s tacit approval and backing as it involved Iran and Syria, which Russia is able to influence. The refusal of Qatari proposal and the “Islamic pipeline” added new aggressive economic dimensions into the already unfolding conflict.

In spite of massive global Islamophobic propaganda and the real or perceived threat of “Islamic terrorism,” the US strategists are unlikely to consider the ideology of “political Islam” to be an existential strategic threat to their interests. In fact on the contrary, intrinsic economic links have historically fused imperialist objectives of the European powers and US with those of “political Islam.”

Therefore from a US perspective, “political Islam” in its various forms is not a direct partner, but neither is it an avowed enemy. Reduction of the US military presence in the Middle East is accompanied by a reconfiguration of its policy aiming at “multilateral containment” that encompasses the regional powers — the Islamic Republic of Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and even Israel to some degree.

The US policy shift in the Middle East simultaneously counters and supports the regional contradictions in relation to each key player. The US is using its power to exploit internal unrest and contradictions by means of a so-called “carrot and stick” approach in its diplomacy.

This is already resulting in Sunni versus Shii’ite alliances and confrontation between Saudi Arabia and Turkey with Iran, because Iran has since 2013 acquired a pivotal role in the US’s plan for a “new Middle East.” The US plan is forging ahead by changing the political map of the Middle East, causing massive humanitarian devastation.

The US and its strategic allies Britain and France are now revising and reconfiguring their overall approach towards the newly configured entities within the Middle East and the wider region such as the Kurds, Sunni Iraq, Baluchistan and more.

The region has been turned into an arena of diplomatic power play, accompanied by proxy civil wars and tactical air strikes orchestrated by the major global powers.

Russia has now entered this dangerous mix of diplomacy and military alliances and counter-alliances. The regional powers such as Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia are pushed and pulled within dangerous alliances and tensions. And the creation of new statelets based on religious and ethnic confrontation is one of the possible solutions to be imposed by the major global powers.

On February 23, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the partition of Syria was possible if the ceasefire fails. The imperialist carving up of the Middle East by Sykes-Picot and Balfour a century ago is being revived in light of the 21st-century interests of the global powers, with ever closer rapprochement between them and political Islam as the dominant ideological power in the Middle East.

This is a recipe for future destructive conflicts and the perpetuation of an oppressive ideology with ensuing humanitarian catastrophes. The refugee crisis was used to facilitate the involvement of major global powers in the Middle East. This has given rise to the reconfiguration of the political map of the region and this in turn will no doubt give rise to more ethnic and religious conflicts and hence more refugees crossing European borders seeking safety and security. The EU’s approach to the Middle East and dealing with the crisis has squarely failed.

  • Navid Shomali is international secretary of the Tudeh Party of Iran.

in Solidarity with Pakistani People after Deadly Floods

WFTU in Solidarity with Pakistani People after Deadly Floods
21 Mar 2016ASIA, PAKISTAN, SOLIDARITY
The World Federation of Trade Unions, (WFTU) addresses the world public opinion and the international working class and expresses its solidarity with the people of Pakistan who is facing heavy torrential rains and flood that left dozens of people dead and displaced. Among the victims are also workers of the coal mines in Orazkai region, where 30 coal miners were trapped and 8 never went back home, after the mine collapsed because of the heavy rain.

The last few years, there are thousands of dead from “natural disasters”, like the deadly mega floods of 2010 that left 2.000 people dead and thousands of displaced families.

This situation is permanent in Pakistan and many other capitalist countries. Despite the progress of science and technology in civil protection sector, the workers, the poor, the toiling masses in capitalist countries remain unprotected when facing natural disasters, earthquakes, epidemics, fires.

It is a matter of class. It is unacceptable that during earthquakes poor people get killed, during fires poor people are burnt, during floods are again the poor who get drown. Those in charge put the blame on the “wrath of nature” or say its “an act of god”, But, the blame for the victims of “natural disasters” lies with the class policies of capitalist governments, who -in order to serve the interests of the capital- let the shortcomings in infrastructure and protection measures persist and allow it so that the people stay unprotected facing “natural disaster”.

WFTU follows the developments in the region and we express our moral support and solidarity with the victims and the labor movement of Pakistan. We call the government of Pakistan to immediately take all necessary relief measures for those affected by the floods and also take all necessary protection measures so that tragedies like this one never happen again.

THE SECRETARIAT

WFTU in Solidarity with Pakistani People after Deadly Floods

Middle East: Powder Keg Politics

iranWith the lifting of Western sanctions against Iran imminent, JANE GREEN considers the implications of recent developments in the region for the Iranian people


THE reintegration of the Islamic Republic of Iran into the world economic community moved a step closer this weekend with the clean bill of health given to the Iranian nuclear programme by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

The IAEA statement opens the way for the removal of financial and economic sanctions imposed upon Iran by the West four years ago.

While the sanctions have been crippling the Iranian economy, the leadership of the Islamic Republic has been moving towards a rapprochement with the United States since the initiation of secret talks in 2010, held in Oman.

As far as the West is concerned, lifting sanctions will mean that Iran is “open for business” and the regime’s leadership, desperate to shore up its credibility with a restive population, will do all it can to encourage further investment in the flagging economy.

The West’s relationship with Iran is by no means straightforward, however.

In the current conflict in Syria, the Islamic Republic has made no secret of its support for President Bashar al-Assad, while Western support has been channelled towards the so-called Free Syrian Army and assorted other groups opposed to the Assad government.

It is against this background that the recent breakdown in diplomatic relations between Iran and Saudi Arabia must be considered.

The Saudis have long been regarded as allies of the West, being the recipients of major arms shipments from Britain and the United States, and they are seen as a safe pair of hands in the Middle East by Nato.

The situation in Syria has resulted in a more ambivalent attitude towards the Saudis, however.

The Arab dictatorship has consistently denied that it has provided any military hardware to Isis but it is widely accepted that Saudi weaponry has made it into the hands of Isis, either directly or indirectly.

In the wider context of the Middle East split between supporters of the Shi’ite and Sunni branches of Islam, the latter, supported by the Saudis, is more consistent with the Isis position.

With both Syria and Iraq being more inclined to the Shi’ite camp, of which Iran is the widely acknowledged leader, it is not difficult to see where Saudi allegiances lie.

There is no doubt that following the execution of Sheikh Nimr Baqr al-Nimr, the Saudi dissident Shi’ite cleric, by the Saudi authorities relations between Saudi Arabia and Iran have become critical and increased the possibility of dangerous conflict between the two countries.

The execution prompted groups associated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps and security forces to raid the embassy of Saudi Arabia in Tehran and the Saudi consulate building in the city of Mashhad.

It came as little surprise that Saudi Arabia announced that, following the attacks on the buildings of the Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran, it had severed its diplomatic ties with Iran and asked that Iranian diplomats leave Saudi Arabia within 48 hours.

The escalation of tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia stems from the serious disputes between the two regimes about the domestic wars in Syria and Yemen.

In February 2015, the Saudi regime officially invaded Yemen to prevent the victory of Houthi forces and their allies who, as alleged by the Saudis, are supported by Iran.

This action by Saudi Arabia and its allies in the Persian Gulf Co-operation Council was to prevent the fall of the previous Yemeni president, supported by Riyadh, and to control the political developments in Yemen in favour of the reactionary policies of the Saudi regime.

In relation to the domestic war in Syria, Saudi Arabia and the reactionary monarchists of the Persian Gulf, in alliance with Turkey and the United States and Nato states, want to transfer power from Assad, Syria’s elected president, to Wahhabi and Salafi groups which they support.

It is no coincidence that on December 28 Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan made a trip to Saudi Arabia just days before the executions which have resulted in the escalation of tensions in the region.

During his official talks with Saudi authorities, Erdogan spoke about the common vision of the two countries regarding the future of Syria.

He spoke of shaping the developments in other conflict areas in the region, including Yemen, stating: “It is clear that steps that are taken without considering the dynamism, sociology and the history of the region will only end in savagery and brutality.”

During the trip, Erdogan officially announced the joining of Turkey to the reactionary alliance of Sunni states engaged in Syria.

Reactionary pressure groups associated with the Revolutionary Guards inside Iran have taken the opportunity to pour fuel on the fire and have talked of “seeking revenge” for the execution of Sheikh Nimr.

Such statements will do nothing to calm tensions between the two states and the opposition inside Iran has called for both sides to step back from such provocative positions.

Any rise in tensions, or new military conflict in the region, could have potentially disastrous consequences for the Middle East as a whole.

In Britain, the Committee for the Defence of the Iranian People’s Rights (Codir), has pointed out the contradiction in Iran condemning the execution of Sheikh Nimr, when Iran leads the world league table of countries which employ capital punishment.

Iran executed almost 1,000 people in 2015. The record in previous years has not been less catastrophic.

Codir has, however, acknowledged that the execution of Sheikh Nimr was clearly an act of provocation on the part of the Saudis, while calling upon the Iranian government not to take the bait and increase tensions in the region any further.

The Iranian progressive and pro-democracy forces have characterised the situation in the Middle East as like a barrel of gunpowder that, in the event of any new military conflict, could lead to blood, fire and catastrophe for its already hard-hit people.

Codir will continue to support the call of the Iranian opposition to defend peace and support a peaceful solution based on the United Nations Charter.

  • Jane Green is national organiser for Codir.

Arab League Takes Dim View Of Saudi-Iranian Proxy Spat

James Tweedie writes:


ARAB League foreign ministers held an extraordinary meeting with a single agenda item — condemnation of the ransacking of Saudi Arabia’s diplomatic mission in Iran and Tehran’s “meddling” in Arab affairs.

Saudi Arabia was expected to garner the support of 18 members of the 22-nation bloc, in which Syria has been represented by the opposition Syrian National Coalition since 2011.

The attack on the embassy followed Riyadh’s execution of prominent Shi’ite preacher and critic of the Saudi monarchy Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr.

Tehran condemned the assault, but the communist Tudeh Party of Iran blamed it on elements linked to the powerful Revolutionary Guard, the paramilitary Basij militia and security forces.

And the party warned that diplomatic rows between Tehran and Riyadh were aimed at derailing Syrian peace talks and that both were determined to see the Syrian civil war pursued to the bitter end.

“The Middle East is like a barrel of gunpowder that in the event of any new military conflict could lead to a blood-and-fire catastrophe for its already hard-hit people,” said Tudeh international secretary Navid Shomali.

Tehran and Riyadh support opposing sides in the wars in Iranian ally Syria and Saudi Arabia’s southern neighbour Yemen.

On Saturday, Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem declared his government’s willingness to abide by the unanimous December 18 UN security council resolution calling for peace between Damascus and the “moderate” opposition.

But Mr Shomali said that there were those on both sides who wanted to scupper the deal.

He drew attention to a visit to Riyadh by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan — a leading proponent of regime change in Syria — days before Mr Nimr’s beheading.

– The US released a video on Saturday which it claimed showed Iranian Revolutionary Guards firing rockets dangerously close to shipping in the Persian Gulf.

The same day, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif wrote to the secretaries-general of the UN and the Organisation of Islamic Co-operation, warning that Saudi Arabia was trying to drag the whole region into conflict.

http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/a-a5af-Arab-League-takes-dim-view-of-Saudi-Iranian-proxy-spat#.VpOCCvmLQ_4

 

 

Diplomatic ties broken between Iran and Saudi Arabia

tudeh-roseThe statement of the CC of Tudeh Party of Iran on the breaking of the diplomatic relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Saudi Arabia and rise of tension in the Persian Gulf region 

Following the execution of Sheikh Nimr Baqr al-Nimr, the Saudi dissident Shiite cleric, by the Saudi authorities, the political and diplomatic relations of this country with Iran – which have already deteriorated in recent years – have now become very critical and increased the possibility of dangerous conflicts between the two countries.

Subsequent to the calculated and provocative action of the Saudi’s reactionary rulers in executing Sheikh Nimr, the Saudi Shiite cleric, on Saturday 2 January , along with 46 other  people – who according to the published news were mostly affiliated with the terrorist group Al-Qaeda – the hooligans associated with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps and Basij militia and IRI’s security forces raided the embassy of Saudi Arabia in Tehran and the Saudi’s consulate building in the city of Mashhad. During these raids, besides chanting proactive slogans, some of the demonstrators took advantage of the indifferent police force, entered the grounds of the embassy and set fire to part of the building and ransacked some of the documents and properties of the embassy. According to the media today (Sunday January 3rd) Adil al-Jubeir, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Saudi Arabia, announced that following the attacks on the buildings of the Saudi diplomatic missions in Iran, Saudi Arabia has severed its diplomatic ties with Iran, and asked that Iranian diplomats leave Saudi Arabia within 48 hours.

The provocative speech of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei, outside of the diplomatic norms, about the execution of Sheikh Nimr, and the attacks and raids on the Saudi embassy and consulate building are politically and diplomatically unjustified. The invasion of the embassy of a State under any pretext is considered invasion of that country and in the eyes of the international bodies, including the UN, is condemned. It must be added that both the President and the head of the Iran’s Judiciary labeled the attack on the Saudi embassy as illegal and criticised the action.

It must be noted that the escalation of tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia stems from the serious disputes between the two regimes about the domestic wars in Syria and Yemen. Last February, the Saudi regime officially invaded Yemen to prevent the victory of Houthi forces and their allies who, as alleged by the Saudis, are supported by Iran. This action by Saudi Arabia and its allies in the Gulf Cooperation Council was to prevent the fall of the previous Yemeni President who was supported by Riyadh and to control the political developments in Yemen in favour of the reactionary policies of the Saudi regime. With regards to the domestic war in Syria, Saudi Arabia and the reactionary monarchists of the Persian Gulf in alliance with Turkey and the United States and NATO states want to transfer  power from Bashar al-Assad, Syria’s elected President, to Wahhabi and Salafi terrorist groups who they support. Iran, in a common front with the Russian Federation, Iraq, and Lebanese Hezbollah adamantly and practically support the continuance of Bashar al-Assad government and the foreign policy of the Syrian government.

The trip to Riyadh (on December 28th) of Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, one of the main protagonists in continuing the bloody and destructive war in Syria, could not be unrelated to the decision of Saudi Arabia and the recent executions and the escalation of tensions in the region. Turkey and Saudi Arabia are central to the alliance of the Sunni countries involved in the developments in Syria. During his official talks with Saudi authorities, Erdoğan spoke about the common vision of the two countries with regards to the future of the Syria and shaping the developments in other conflict areas in the regions, including Yemen, and said: “It is clear that steps that are taken without considering the dynamism, sociology, and the history of the region will only end in savagery and brutality.” In this trip, Erdoğan officially announced the joining of Turkey to the reactionary alliance of Sunni states engaged in Syria.

What should be clearly stated is that the irresponsible statements of influential figures within the Iranian regime about the recent worrying events do not help in keeping the peace and calm at all and in fact serve the dangerous policies of the reactionary regime of Saudi Arabia. Ali Akbar Velayati, the Head of the Strategic Research of the Expediency Discernment Council in Iran said: “the indications of the Saudi government’s dissatisfaction with the events in Yemen and the developments of the region are seen in the execution of the Sheikh Nimr.” He said that he is “sure” that Saudi Arabia will suffer a military defeat in Yemen. Iran’s news media released the harshly worded statement of the Guards Corps which alluded to “seeking revenge” for the execution of Sheikh Nimr and threatened to “appropriately respond” to this action of Saudi Arabia. Iran’s Military also issued a statement denouncing the execution of Sheikh Nimr and stated that “it is time for an appropriate response to the crimes of the House of Saud.”

The Tudeh Party of Iran condemns the anti-people and reactionary policies of the Saudi regime and at the same time expresses its grave concern about the events of recent days and the dangerous escalation of tensions in the region. If this deepening crisis is not managed wisely and based on the national interests of our nation, it could be exploited by the warmongering circles on both sides and lead to further conflicts, and cause our nation to suffer from its unpredictable disastrous and devastating consequences. The Saudi regime is determined to take advantage of any escalation of tension against the Islamic Republic of Iran to strengthen its position in the region and to continue and deepen the isolation of Iran which will have huge political and economic costs for Iran. The reactionary and warmongering circles in the power structure of the theocratic regime of Iran could also exploit this tense environment and the possibility of conflicts to reshape the political atmosphere of the country, over the next few months leading to the parliamentary elections [in February], to their advantage and cause new problems and new rounds of devastating sanctions against Iran. Any rise of tensions and any new military conflict in the region could have disastrous consequences for the future of our country.

The Tudeh Party of Iran, which is a longtime critic of the anti-people regime of Saudi Arabia and its human rights record, condemns the provocative execution of Sheikh Nimr Baqr al-Nimr and calls upon the appropriate international bodies like the Human Rights Commission of the UN to seriously deal with the continuing human rights violations in that country. At the same time, we denounce the raids on the embassy and consular building of Saudi Arabia in Iran and the damaging of their properties. The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran is bound to act upon its responsibilities according to the international diplomatic protocols. The Tudeh Party of Iran considers the protection of the interests of the people of Iran its national responsibility and its position is to defend peace and support a peaceful solution to end all disputes and regional conflicts based on the United Nations Charter and respect for the will and demand of the nations. Currently, the Middle East is like a barrel of gunpowder that in the event of any new military conflict could lead to a blood and fire catastrophe for its already hard-hit people.

The Central Committee of the Tudeh Party of Iran

3 January 2016

2015 World Peace Council EC Meeting, Guantánamo, Cuba

The Executive Committee meeting of the World Peace Council was held in Guantánamo, Cuba, on 20-21 November, 2015.

The reports of WPC President Socorro Gomes and General Secretary Thanassis Pafilis are as follows:

Political report – Socorro Gomes, President of WPC

Dear comrades:

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.

Friends,

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.

Friends,

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.

Dear friends

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

Dear friends

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.

Dear friends
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.

Dear friends

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.

Dear friends

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.

Dear friends

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.

Dear friends

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.

Dear friends

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!

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!Dear friends and comradesThe 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 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. The WPC demands the withdrawal of all foreign military troops from Haiti. 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 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. 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 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 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 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.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.Dear friends 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. 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 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 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. 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.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. 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.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.Dear friends 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 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. 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 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. 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. 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. . 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.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 theDear friends 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. 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 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. 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 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 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. 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 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.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”.Dear friends 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 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. 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 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 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.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.Dear friends 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. 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.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. The WPC shall plan and organize actions against NATO towards it next summit in July 8-9, 2016 in Poland. 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. 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 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.Dear friends 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.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.Dear friends 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 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.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.Dear friends 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. 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 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.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.Dear comrades and friends Guantanamo/Cuba 20-21 November 2015Report of the General Secretary Thanassis Pafilis to the Executive Committee Socorro GomesMuchas gracias,La urgencia de estas luchas también nos lleva a la urgencia de fortalecer el CMP hasta nuestra próxima reunión. Esperamos todos en Brasil con gran alegría y entusiasmo, seguros de que nuestro trabajo conjunto fortalecerá nuestras luchas contra la opresión, la guerra y el imperialismo y por la paz entre todos los pueblos.Nos enfrentamos a retos y tareas importantes. El próximo año, celebraremos la Asamblea del Consejo Mundial de la Paz. Su preparación es también un momento de reflexión, lucha y renovados esfuerzos de las fuerzas democráticas y amantes de la paz en todo el mundo. Tenemos banderas fundamentales para fortalecer y ampliar, como la campaña por el desmantelamiento de las bases militares extranjeras, la abolición de las armas nucleares, la disolución de la OTAN, entre otros, y más que nunca, la solidaridad es esencial con los pueblos en resistencia, de Puerto Rico, Palestina, el Sahara Occidental, Palestina, Siria e Irak.Amigos,También así hay que destacarse el desarrollo de un proceso complejo y tortuoso, las negociaciones de paz entre las Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) y el gobierno colombiano. La paz en Colombia es una de las principales demandas de los movimientos sociales populares, democráticos, patrióticos y antiimperialistas en América Latina, entre ellos el de las FARC. Si materializada, será una victoria de estas fuerzas y una derrota de los militaristas, fascistas, paramilitares, narcotraficantes y otros agentes del imperialismo en Colombia y América Latina.Por lo tanto, el Consejo Mundial de la Paz reafirma su compromiso de defender la Revolución Bolivariana en Venezuela y nuestra solidaridad inquebrantable. La Venzuela Bolivariana también se ha convertido en una bandera de lucha de todos los pueblos de América Latina y una referencia a la lucha anti-imperialista.Así mismo, en un contexto global marcado por la escalada de la guerra y la agresión contra la soberanía de las naciones, América Latina está siendo atacada por las fuerzas conservadoras que buscan revertir las victorias de integración democrática, soberana, de solidaridad y la búsqueda de la región por consolidarse como una zona de paz. Esta es una ofensiva no puede ser subestimada, y el rol del imperialismo no puede ser ignorado.Aliadas a la política ofensiva y represiva de la derecha en Europa y en América Latina, con el pretexto de la lucha contra las crisis políticas o económicas, están las entidades que se presentan como democráticas y liberales, pero revelan sus rostros autoritarios en el ataque decisivo contra los trabajadores y trabajadores.Al celebrar la gran victoria del pueblo contra el nazi-fascismo en la Segunda Guerra Mundial, con la movilización importante por el 70 aniversario de la Victoria, honramos la resistencia valiente en la defensa de la humanidad. Por lo tanto, denunciamos con profunda preocupación el resurgimiento de fuerzas fascistas que avanzan contra los movimientos progresistas de todo el mundo, incluso en Europa.Compañeros y compañeras,Un ejemplo de los compromisos históricos aún por cumplirse, entre muchos, es el proceso de descolonización del mundo. Cuando de la creación de la ONU, los movimientos de liberación nacional ganaron fuerza en sus luchas por independencia. La soberanía, la autodeterminación, los derechos humanos y la justicia parecían definir el futuro del mundo después de la guerra, cuando avançaríamos garantizados por una estructura basada en estos compromisos. Sin embargo, en nuestra agenda siguen las lucha contra esta forma retrógrada de dominación que es el colonialismo y la ocupación. Este es el caso del Sáhara Occidental, Palestina, Puerto Rico, Guayana Francesa, Islas Malvinas y muchos otros. Nos sumamos a estes pueblos en su heroica lucha de resistencia contra la dominación.Para ello, abogamos por el fortalecimiento de las estructuras esenciales a nuestra lucha, tanto por la unidad de los movimientos antiimperialistas de los que somos parte, como por la reforma crucial y urgente de la ONU. Si esto no se cumple, la ONU se arriesga a convertirse cada vez más ilegítimo a los ojos de los pueblos. Su instrumentalización por el imperio, que tiene el monopolio del uso de la fuerza y la coacción a través del Consejo de Seguridad, arriesga la construcción y la consolidación de un sistema de la paz, la justicia y la cooperación. Por lo tanto, la ONU necesita introducir más democracia y representación, con compromisos reales con los principios de la Carta de las Naciones Unidas, tan caros a nosotros.Las bases militares extranjeras también siguen siendo centrales en nuestra denuncia diaria del imperialismo y del ataque frontal a la soberanía nacional. Debemos fortalecer nuestra lucha por su abolición, ya que son expresiones de un orden internacional de dominación y amenaza. Nos levantamos determinados contra esta lógica belicosa y agresiva.Además, no se olvidará jamás a los sobrevivientes de los bombardeos nucleares de Hiroshima y Nagasaki, hace 70 años perpetrados por los Estados Unidos y que se mantienen en la impunidad por los terribles crímenes contra la humanidad, tras inaugurar el uso de estas armas de destrucción masiva. Del mismo modo, reafirmamos la solidaridad con las luchas de las Islas Marshall y otros lugares afectados por los ensayos nucleares realizados por los poderes y con el pueblo de Vietnam. Exigimos el reconocimiento de las responsabilidades de los Estados Unidos por el uso del Agente Naranja contra la población civil vietnamita, aún haciendo frente a las horribles consecuencias de esta arma química. Por lo tanto, el desarme mundial es inherente a la construcción de la paz, de la cooperación internacional y del sistema de la solidaridad, la justicia y la humanidad.El Consejo Mundial de la Paz reafirma, en creciente tono de alarma: hay que seguir determinados en la demanda por la abolición inmediata y completa de las armas nucleares, por el fin al chantaje de la lógica de amenaza a toda la humanidad. El Llamamiento de Estocolmo sigue actual. Las negociaciones deliberadamente inocuas y morosas entre las potencias nucleares en la conferencia de revisión del Tratado de No Proliferación (TNP) de este año, que terminó en vacío sobre todo por la posición de Israel y Estados Unidos, han dejado claro el descompromiso de estas potenciascon el desarme nuclear y la paz.Compañeros,La gira belicosa de OTAN sigue movilizando contra el “extremismo” en el Medio Oriente y para provocar a Rusia en su própria vecindad, manteniendo Ucrania y Montenegro, entre otros, bajo su radar. Durante su visita a Montenegro, el 14 de octubre, Stoltenberg evaluó las reformas en el país como “esenciales” a la candidatura de adhesión a la alianza belicista, pero instó al gobierno a “consolidar el apoyo público” para ese paso. Las protestas brutalmente reprimidas pocos días despúes en las calles de la capital de Montenegro, sin embargo, demostraron que el camino tomado estaba lejos de ser consensuado con la población del país.En su informe anual correspondiente a 2014, el nuevo Secretario General de la OTAN, Jens Stoltenberg, renovó el tono en el fortalecimiento de la alianza frente”amenazas a la seguridad” para justificar su brutalidad. En septiembre de 2014, la OTAN definió el “Plan de Acción de Prontitud” que, según Stoltenberg, es el “más significativo fortalecimiento de la defensa colectiva de la OTAN desde el fin de la Guerra Fría”, además de los planes por alianzas con países fuera del bloque. Para ello, la OTAN debe adaptar su “postura militar estratégica”y aumentar la Fuerza de Reacción – una fuerza multinacional – para incluir respuesta casi inmediata “a la periferia del territorio de la OTAN”. Esta fue la fuerza probada en maniobras en Portugal , Italia y España.La movilización contra las maniobras militares de la OTAN en Portugal, Italia y España fueron cruciales para llamar la atención del público. El movimiento de armas pesadas, buques de guerra, miles de soldados e incluso armas nucleares fue una afrenta a los pueblos en un ejercicio odioso de demostración de fuerza para mantener al mundo amenazado y “disuadido”de desafiar la hegemonía del imperio.En 2014, según el Instituto Internacional de Estocolmo de Investigación para la Paz (SIPRI), el 34% del gasto en el sector militar del mundo era de los EE.UU., casi tres veces más que el segundo mayor gasto, China, con 12%. La decisión de 2006 entre miembros de la OTAN, el compromiso del 2% del PIB de cada país para esta máquina de guerra, indica un orden militarizado, la amenaza de la guerra y la desviación de los recursos de los pueblos a la violencia. Los miembros europeos de la OTAN gastaron ese año $ 250 mil millones a costa de los derechos económicos y sociales alcanzados trasmucha lucha por su pueblo. Por consiguiente, reafirmamos que la lucha contra la militarización del planeta y el desmantelamiento de la OTAN son temas centrales para el Consejo Mundial de la Paz, y debemos mantenerlos junto a los temas más caros para nosotros.Como sabemos, la OTAN nació como una alianza agresiva, pero su supervivencia hoy es insostenible y pretende hostigar a los pueblos. Su gasto militar es un directo saquear de los recursos de su propio pueblo para sostener la amenaza contra otros pueblos del mundo. En 2010, cuando se enfrentaban a una crisis internacional devastadora que puso a millones de personas en el desempleo e incluso la pobreza, atacando los derechos sociales de los trabajadores, mientras beneficiaban a la banca mundial, los estados miembros de la OTAN gastaron 3.3% de su Producto Interno Bruto (PIB) combinado, $ 1.1 billones [trillion, en inglés] de dólares, y el 1,1% de su fuerza de trabajo en la guerra.Esto también sigue siendo el caso en Europa del Este desde el golpe de Estado fascista en Ucrania y la propagación de la presencia militar de la OTAN en la vecindad de Rusia. En contra de este tipo de actividad, especialmente, el Consejo Mundial de la Paz y sus miembros deben reforzar sus acciones por la disolución inmediata de una máquina mortal y anacrónica de guerra. Las importantes iniciativas del Consejo Portugués para la Paz y la Cooperación, el Intal y el Consejo de la Paz de Estados Unidos deben ser reforzadas por el CMP y difundidas sistemáticamente, teniendo un lugar merecido en nuestras prioridades. Las acciones con las masas y la lucha coordinada por la disolución de la OTAN son instrumentales y, ciertamente, pueden movilizar a la población.También seguimos con preocupación la provocación de los Estados Unidos en el Mar del Sur de China, donde la disputa territorial regional debe ser resuelta mediante el diálogo entre las partes interesadas. Los Estados Unidos insisten en tratar de controlar la situación a través de sus aliados regionales, en particular Japón, que impulsó la enmienda constitucional para aumentar su sector militar en contra de la voluntad del pueblo. Una vez más, el imperio actúa por la desestabilización regional.Además, como las respuestas del gobierno francés y su papel en el conflicto en Siria han demostrado, la lucha contra los grupos terroristas – muchos brotados por el imperio – es instrumentalizada para el ataque a los derechos democráticos de sus propios ciudadanos o de inmigrantes en el país, o incluso para justificar bombardeos criminales con prontitud ordenados por François Hollande, supuestamente contra objetivos del “Estado islámico” en Siria, sin el permiso del gobierno sirio. Al mismo tiempo, la reunión en Austria, aunque haya incluido a un actor regional importante como Irán, propuso discutir el futuro del pueblo sirio sin la presencia del gobierno electo. Las potencias imperialistas insisten en eliminar un actor central para continuar violando flagrantemente la soberanía siria.Lamentamos profundamente ataques como los perpetrados en París hace pocos días y nos solidarizamos de la forma más sincera con el pueblo francés en su dolor. El terrorismo es un método cruel, injusto y brutal ya que sus destinatarios principales son personas inocentes. Aún así, la ola selectiva de solidaridad en el mundo fue reveladora, mientras que otro atentado en Beirut también mató a decenas de personas, sobre el que poco o nada se informó. La guerra ya se supone “normalizada” para algunos, así como la muerte y la violencia, y eso es inaceptable. Todos los pueblos quieren la paz.La condición de muchos yemeníes, iraquíes, kurdos, afganos, libaneses, palestinos y sirios es también es el resultado de la búsqueda por la construcción del”nuevo Oriente Medio”, mediante la instalación de régimenes aliados al imperialismo, en una región rica y diversa política y culturalmente, también estratégica en términos de recursos energéticos, tal como la conocemos. El terrorismo hace allí y también entre los musulmanes las principales víctimas, pero las respuestas islamófobas se han institucionalizado en los centros de poder.Los refugiados que van a Europa en busca de refugio reciben tratamiento a menudo inhumano tras sus cruces clandestinos inseguros. Sólo de enero a octubre de 2015, más de tres mil personas perdieron la vida, mientras que las tecnocracias discuten los números y los límites de su “buena voluntad” hacia los desterrados. Esta es una tendencia, sin embargo. Desde 2000, según la Organización Internacional para las Migraciones, más de 22.000 personas han muerto tratando de llegar a Europa y miles más han muerto intentando cruzar la frontera entre México y Estados Unidos. Esto también incluye a los inmigrantes que huyen de la pobreza extrema, especialmente en África, víctimas de las políticas neo-colonialistas de las grandes potencias, ya sea a través de la guerra en Libia, Malí, República Democrática del Congo y la República Centroafricana, ya sea a través de relaciones la explotación imperialista. El pueblo africano sigue avanzando en su lucha por la dignidad humana, pero el continente sigue siendo el escenario de retos inimaginables para superar la guerra, en la que las potencias tienen papel central y destructivo.El Medio Oriente está sumergido en el caos creado por la política imperialista de injerencia, “guerras por procuración” y el impulso a la miríada de grupos armados y terroristas que asolan la región. La guerra en Siria entra en su quinto año, con más de 240.000 muertos y millones de refugiados que tratan de escapar de la violencia en países vecinos o en los cruces inhumanos a Europa y al resto del mundo. Llegan a su destino después de haber perdido familiares en el camino, para hacer frente a la xenofobia de las políticas de los países directamente responsables de su condición insegura, a merced de la militarización impuesta por estos poderes.El Consejo Mundial de la Paz acoge con alegría el izar de la bandera palestina delante de la sede de la ONU mientras ve con profunda preocupación y condena la escalada de violencia en acciones cada vez más brutales de la ocupación sionista en los territorios palestinos. La repetición de este ciclo vicioso fatal e inaceptable se debe a la persistente impunidad del gobierno sionista por sus crímenes de guerra, cometidos diariamente contra el pueblo palestino valientes, y a la alianza de los Estados Unidos, com su apoyo a un régimen de opresión y amenaza contra los pueblos de la región y el monopolio de un “proceso de paz” falso que hace dos décadas arraiga la ocupación.El año 2015 trae ocasiones fundamentales para la reflexión y evaluación del curso de esta historia que nos une contra la guerra y el imperialismo. Celebrando la gran victoria del pueblo contra el nazi-fascismo, recordamos a las víctimas de los horrendos crímenes contra la humanidad con el bombardeo atómico estadounidense a Japón, marcamos el camino determinado del Consejo Mundial de la Paz en sus 65 años de lucha comprometida, evaluamos el 70 aniversario de las Naciones Unidas y el rol que aún debe cumplir como instrumento de los pueblos y naciones soberanas en la defensa de la paz mundial y el derecho internacional; denunciamos la supervivencia nefasta y el crecimiento desproporcionado de la máquina de guerra imperialista, la OTAN, y reiteramos nuestra demanda por la inmediata abolición de las armas nucleares, reafirmamos el Llamamiento de Estocolmo, entre otras cuestiones centrales de nuestra agenda.Las victorias cubanas se acumulan y la solidaridad con este pueblo valiente se renueva y se intensifica. La liberación de los cinco héroes cubanos y la reanudación de las relaciones diplomáticas con los Estados Unidos son pasos importantes en esta nueva etapa. Seguimos comprometidos, sin embargo, por exigir el fin del criminal bloqueo a la isla revolucionaria y la retirada inmediata de la base militar estadounidense de Guantánamo.Nuestra participación en el Seminario Internacional por la Paz y la Abolición de las Bases Militares Extranjeras demuestra la persistencia de cuestiones de este tipo en el orden del día del Consejo Mundial de la Paz. Guantánamo todavía está ocupada por los EE.UU. en su afrenta perniciosa a la soberanía del pueblo cubano, como a la mayoría de los países de América Latina y muchos otros en todo el mundo.Queremos, en primer lugar, agradecer muy sinceramente al Movimiento Cubano por la Paz y la Soberanía de los Pueblos, MovPaz, por la organización de nuestras reuniones. Los esfuerzos son extremadamente importantes y simbólicos para que nos encontremos aquí en la isla revolucionaria y expresemos nuestra solidaridad con el pueblo cubano, por mantener y profundizar su lucha por el socialismo.Nos encontramos aquí en un año lleno de retos y amenazas a los pueblos del mundo, a la seguridad y la paz internacional. El imperialismo siempre se supera. Desde los últimos graves acontecimientos, como hemos visto en Beirut, Malí, Libia, Yemen, Nigeria y París, impone la opresión y la guerra, pero los pueblos siguen demostrando su compromiso con la resistencia y la lucha. Por lo tanto, nuestras reuniones son marcadas por un fuerte compromiso y la evaluación crítica del contexto en el que vivimos y los caminos que seguimos.Estimados compañeros y compañeras:Informe Político – Socorro Gomes, Presidente del CMPSocorro GomesThank you very much, 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. 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. Friends,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 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.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.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.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.Dear friends and comrades,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.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.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.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.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.Friends, 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.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 countryIn 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.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 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.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.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.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.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 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.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.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 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. 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 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.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.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.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.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.Dear comrades:Political report – Socorro Gomes, President of WPCThe Executive Committee meeting of the World Peace Council was held in Guantánamo, Cuba, on 20-21 November, 2015. The reports of WPC President Socorro Gomes and General Secretary Thanassis Pafilis are as follows:DocumentsTuesday, December 1, 2015  WPC Executive Committee Meeting, 20-21 November 2015, Guantánamo, Cuba

British Peace Assembly Condemns Turkey’s Provocation! 

The statement from the British Peace Assembly issued on 24 November 2015:

“The British Peace Assembly (BPA) joins peace movements and peace-loving people worldwide in condemning the shooting down of a Russian jet by Turkey earlier today. This action is dangerous and provocative in the extreme, and especially so in the current tense and volatile situation.

Given that Turkey is a NATO member, this act might easily lead to further escalation and wider involvement in the war, creating greater destabilisation of the Middle East and threatening world peace.

The BPA holds that military intervention in Syria can never solve the conflict. It will serve only to add to the chaos, death and destruction already meted out to the people of Syria by ISIS, other terrorist organisations and the reactionary regimes of the region which finance and support them.

The BPA believes that the US and its NATO allies, including Britain, must immediately withdraw from all military involvement. In particular we call on the government of Britain not to attack any part of Syria by air, land or sea. The only possible solution to the conflict is a political one and every effort and resource available should be deployed urgently to this end. Only then can the people of Syria rebuild on the ruins of their country and create a peaceful future and just society of their own choosing.”

 

 

 J D Bernal

BPA celebrates its most distinguished founder:

John Desmond Bernal (1901– 1971).

Professor Bernal was born in Ireland. At an early age, he showed talent for science, devising his own laboratory tests. At Cambridge University, Bernal became inspired by the October 1917 Russian Revolution, at a time when the whole of Europe was at war, to devote himself to a lifetime of peace.

The importance of his scientific work cannot be over-stated. He started research at the Davy-Faraday Laboratory in 1923, which led to him determining the structure of graphite a year later. Professor Bernal went on to realise a diverse array of achievements – a model for analysing fluid density, advancements in the

Bernal and other scientists outside the Academy of Science, Moscow, 1953, after he had won the Lenin Peace Prize.bernal lenin peace prize

Bernal greatly contributed to the understanding of sex hormones and proteins, and X-ray crystallography. The Mulberry Harbours, so crucial to the success of D-Day owed its conception to him. Whilst the ‘Bernal sphere’ space habitat was fully realised by NASA in the 197os. , and Mulberry Harbours developed.

Dorothy Hodgkin, was one Nobel Prize winner, who referenced Bernal’s contribution to their research.

Des `Sage’ Bernal was Chair of the World Peace Council (1959-65): http://www.wpc-in.org/

He was also President of the Marx Memorial Library & Workers’ School (1952-71) in Clerkenwell, which to this day maintains a Peace Library from his own books and peace files: http://www.marx-memorial-library.org/

Pablo Picasso painted this mural in Bernal’s flat:

picasso and bernal

Des Bernal died on 15th September 1971:

bernal obit