Sign for Climate Justice

From the Action Network ...


December (2018) government delegates from around the world will meet to decide how to implement the UN Paris Agreement on Climate Change. The meeting’s outcomes will affect billions of people.

The New Standard for Human Rights

The UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants

(25.10.18): The UN Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and other People working in Rural Areas was presented in the UN headquarters to the 'Third Committee of the General Assembly'. This comes after nearly two decades of consultations and negotiations led by millions of peasants, pastoralists, artisanal fisher folk, agricultural workers and indigenous peoples’ organisations ... and with the support of CETIM and FIAN International.

UPDATE: (19.11.18)

The Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural) of the UN General Assembly has voted in favour of the UN Declaration on the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas, through the Resolution no. A/C.3/73/L.30 - [119 for :: 7 against]


The Declaration, now finally ratification, supports the development and implementation of socioeconomic policies that improve our food and agriculture system. It will also pave the way for the creation of public policies in favour of peasants and rural workers in countries where such policies do not exist.

The vast majority of the world's citizens support the Declaration. The European Economic and Social Committee has shown its support, and the European Parliament voted a resolution asking EU states to back the project. On 2nd October in France, the National Advisory Committee on Human Rights urged the French government, in an advisory opinion, to back the text. The Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) has also expressed its support to the Declaration and so has the former rapporteur on the Right to Food, Olivier de Schutter as well as his successor, Hilal Elver.

It is estimated that of out of 820 million people suffering from hunger (2018 UN figure), 80% live in rural areas. These people are particularly vulnerable and discriminated against,. They suffer forced expulsions and lack access to essential resources: land, seeds, loans, education, justice and basic services. Yet, on average, small food producers contribute 70% of the world’s food, with this figure rising to more than 80% in so-called developing countries.

Source: Time to Mobilise   #peasantsrightsnow

The current draft of the declaration was finalised in April 2018. A process that began over 10 years ago. Thereafter, the text was tabled for final voting and adoption at the UN General Assembly in September 2018. Ratification is expected by mid next year.


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New Zealand didn't bother turning up for this one.

16th October, 2018

International Day of Action for the Food Sovereignty of Peoples and Against Multinationals

Peasants' seeds are a heritage of peoples in the service of humanity. They are the basis of global food production and they enable peasants to produce and a healthy and diversified food supply.

The world's seeds are threatened by the seed policies of rich countries, free trade agreements and agribusiness. Under the pretext of "improving" seed productivity, agribusiness has created a neo-liberal seed system that has homogenised, impoverished and monopolised seeds, causing the loss of three-quarters of seed diversity and annihilating a diversity that it took people – thanks to the work of peasants – 10000 years to generate.
Three companies, Monsanto-Bayer, Syngenta-ChemChina and Dupont-Dow, control more than 50% of the world's commercial seeds – usually GM seeds claimed to resist herbicides and deter insects. Under the impetus of the WTO, the World Bank and the IMF, and through free trade agreements and laws protecting seed and breeders' rights, such as UPOV standards, this seed system only allows the circulation of its own seeds, criminalising the saving, exchange, donation and sale of local farmer seeds.

The situation is such that farmers have lost a lot of their heritage seeds, are put in prison for the defense and exchange of their seed heritage, and risk raids and seizure of their seeds. Biodiversity is destroyed by the use of chemical fertilisers, hybrid seeds and genetically modified organisms developed by multinational companies. \Everywhere citizens have difficulty accessing healthy, diversified and healthy food.

All over the world, La Via Campesina and its member organisations are stepping up their efforts in training, education, mutual support and seed exchange. We fight for national laws and international treaties to guarantee the rights of farmers to save, use, exchange, sell and protect their seeds against biopiracy and genetic contamination, we write books on the history of seeds, carry out studies and mapping. We also found agro-ecology schools and organize peasant' seed exchange fairs. We exercise our right of self-determination to select the seed varieties we want to plant and reject economically, ecologically and culturally dangerous varieties. These are rights affirmed by the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and by the United Nations Declaration on Peasants' Rights which has just been adopted by the Human Rights Council in Geneva. It is also the only way to ensure healthy food for citizens, the preservation of biodiversity and the achievement of food sovereignty.

No government measure can limit the collective rights of farmers to use, exchange and sell their OWN seeds.
Free seed exchange between farmers should NOT be subject to restriction.

“Adopt a Seed”

We call on every peasant, peasant family or community to engage in the adoption of a variety of plant or animal seeds, to become the guardian of this seed, ensuring its propagation, reproduction and distribution and to engage in the collective defense of their rights to use, exchange, sell and protect them. In this way, we will create a large network of peasant seeds to save those that have become rare and extend production towards the food sovereignty of peoples.
By adopting a seed, peasant families preserve their identity and territory and affirm their peasant way of life. They claim the historical memory and ancestral culture of seed management, promoting an urban and rural ecological agriculture that reproduces the miracle of more seeds and food of better quality, taste and nutritional value.

Militarism 2018

World Beyond War has just released an updated 2018 mapping of militarism in the world. The map system can be explored and adjusted to display what you’re looking for, as well as display precise data and its sources at http://bit.ly/mappingmilitarism

Here are some examples of what it can show:

Where wars are present that directly and violently killed over 1,000 people in 2017:

Where wars are present and where wars come from are two different questions. If we look at where money is spent on wars and where weapons for wars are produced and exported, there is little overlap with the map above.

Here’s a map showing countries color-coded based on the dollar amount of their weapons exports to other governments from 2008-2015:

And here’s one showing the same but limited to exports to the Middle East:

Here are dictatorships that the United States sells or gives weapons to (and in most cases gives military training to):

These countries purchase U.S. weapons and report on it to the United Nations:

This next map shows countries color-coded based on how much they spend on their own militarism:

Here are countries colored based on how many nuclear weapons they have:

In the next map, every shade of orange or yellow (anything but gray) indicates the presence of some number of U.S. troops, not even counting special forces. Here’s a printable PDF.

The map system includes numerous maps illustrating steps toward peace. This one shows which nations are members of the International Criminal Court:

This one shows from which nations people have signed World BEYOND War’s pledge to help try to end all wars:

That pledge can be signed at http://worldbeyondwar.org/individual

These maps and more information about them can be found at World Beyond War (needs Flash Player to view).

 

Last year was the worst on record for killings of land and environmental defenders

Brazil and the Philippines are the most dangerous countries for activists fighting mining, agribusiness and hydroelectric companies for their rights to land, forests, and rivers, a new report by Global Witness found.

More than three people were killed every week for trying to protect their land, forests and rivers against industries last year, with Southeast Asia emerging as one of the most dangerous regions for environmental activists.

The new report by international campaigning group Global Witness, entitled On Dangerous Ground (20.06.16), documented 185 known killings worldwide in 2015, making it the worst year on record for the murder of environmental and land defenders.  But severe limits on information “mean the true numbers are undoubtedly higher”, said the group.

 

Brazil was the deadliest country for environmental protestors, with a record 50 activists murdered last year. Philippines came in second, with an unprecedented 33 killings. Across Southeast Asia, three deaths were documented in Indonesia in 2015, with two murders each recorded in Myanmar, Cambodia, and Thailand.

Berta Cáceres - Hondura activist

Death of Honduran activist Berta Cáceres after naming Hilary Clinton, underscores the need for environmental democracy

These figures are a 59 per cent increase from killings in 2014, and almost 40 per cent of the victims were from indigenous groups.

The mining industry was one of the biggest drivers of the killings, accounting for 42 of the 185 deaths. Agribusiness and logging together accounted for 35 deaths, while hydropower projects were linked to another 15 deaths.

Global Witness noted that very few of the murderers were ever brought to justice, as governments failed to properly investigate these crimes and prosecute anyone for them. This is likely due to collusion between corporate and state interests, the NGO suggested.

It pointed to the strong role of paramilitary groups, the army, police, and private security firms in the killings – these groups accounted for 51 of the 185 killings – as evidence of state or company influence over the killings.

Source: https://www.globalwitness.org/en/reports/dangerous-ground/

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