[OPE] Jubilee South Statement on Global Economic Crisis

From: Gerald Levy <jerry_levy@verizon.net>
Date: Sat Feb 28 2009 - 06:22:28 EST

> Jubilee South Statement to the Commission of Experts of the President of
> the UN General Assembly on Reforms of the International Monetary and
> Financial System
> February, 2009
> Towards an International Monetary and Financial System at the service of
> the needs and rights of peoples and the environment
> Jubilee South is a network of popular movements and organizations in over
> 50 countries of Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean who have
> joined together to develop a global South movement to overcome debt
> domination and build an equitable, sustainable and democratic economic
> order.
> As such, we are particularly concerned that the present conjuncture of
> converging crises – financial and economic but also food, social, energy,
> ecological and climate crises – together with the many false solutions
> that are being proposed in response, is leading quickly to a renewed
> exacerbation of the still unresolved "debt crisis" unleashed in the
> '80s[1]. Nor can it escape us that that crisis, directly related to the
> process of unregulated financialization and concentration of the global
> economy that is at the heart of today's systemic crisis, has received far
> less attention and commitment of resources over its nearly 30 years of
> continuing destruction of the lives and futures of hundreds of millions of
> people and countries throughout the global South, than has the present
> crisis in far less than 30 months.
> It is thus imperative not only to ensure that responses to the present
> crises do not contribute to a further accumulation of illegitimate debt,
> when those most vulnerable are forced to pay for the benefits that accrue
> to others, but also that this conjuncture serve as an historic moment to
> redress such systemic injustice in the process of reshaping global
> economic governance and the very economic system itself. Efforts to
> restore "stability" and/or "prosperity" to the global economy must
> recognize that a return to the "pre-crisis order" is not an option
> grounded in the pursuit of justice and that a continued emphasis on
> "growth" as a prerequisite for "equity" is part of the problem and not the
> solution. Alternatives must be implemented that are based on solidarity,
> social and ecological justice, the sovereignty and self-determination of
> peoples and the defense and full respect of human, collective, and
> environmental rights, and in that sense we encourage adoption of the
> following proposals:
> 1. Cancel debt claims immediately and without conditionalities and uphold
> the sovereign right and obligation of countries to take unilateral action
> to stop payments in order to comply with their human and environmental
> rights obligations.
> Stopping the resource drain from countries in the global South to the
> dominant economies and transnational companies in the North is perhaps the
> most important measure that could be taken immediately in order to insure
> adequate financing for both countercyclical crisis response measures in
> the South, as well as medium to long-term financing for the needs of
> people and the planet. In light of the present crisis situation in
> particular, repudiation or stopping payment on debt claims that have not
> been demonstrated to be legitimate, as through a sovereign, participatory,
> and comprehensive process of debt auditing, or whose servicing would imply
> the violation of basic human and environmental rights, must be recognized
> as a valid response.
> 2- The UN should address the issue of illegitimate debt. As "toxic loans"
> and the irresponsibility of self-regulated lenders has come to the
> forefront of global debate, there can be no further delay in addressing
> the reality and consequences of illegitimate debt, both in relation to the
> causes of the current crises, the danger of burgeoning stocks of crisis
> borrowings, and the development of alternatives. There have been important
> breakthroughs regarding the issue of illegitimate debt in diverse fora
> over recent times. Norway's unilateral decision to cancel several claims
> on the basis of "failed development policy" and "co-responsibility" was a
> historic precedent, and has already opened up discussions on odious or
> illegitimate debt in international arenas including UNCTAD, the World
> Bank, and the Paris Club. The comprehensive debt audit conducted by
> Ecuador and the suspension of payments on some claims subject to further
> investigation, and the launching of an audit by Paraguay of the Itaipú
> binational debts, are also major achievements that provide an example for
> other governments both South and North. The UN must move beyond the
> Monterrey affirmation of lender/borrower co-responsibility and begin to
> address this issue directly, including it in the Agenda of the Special
> Session with the aim of initiating a political dialogue on illegitimate
> debt at the highest levels.
> 3- Push for and support the implementation of comprehensive and
> participatory debt audits. Audits are important tools for popular
> movements, citizens and governments to evaluate the impact and legitimacy
> of the system of indebtedness and to establish the basis for sanctioning
> those responsible for illegitimate and illicit actions, recovering what
> has been unjustly collected or stolen, and instituting new alternatives
> for the sovereign control over financial resources. In the present crisis
> conjuncture, and as a necessary step toward any transformation in the
> international monetary and financial system, the realization of
> comprehensive country-based audits, articulated regionally and/or
> globally, can be a powerful tool for galvanizing public debate and
> participation in the processes of change as well as impacting in the
> balance of forces opposed to such change.
> 4- The UN must also address the issue of social, historic and ecological
> debts, in the context of responding to the crises-provoked needs and the
> challenges of long-term system transformation. An important way of
> responding to the needs of those peoples and countries in situation of
> poverty or exclusion, heightened now by the impact of the global crises,
> to overcome the asymmetries of power and control in decision-making
> processes and over resources and reinforce state and peoples sovereignty,
> is not through "more aid¨ but by recognizing the existence of these debts
> to the peoples and countries of the South and taking action to secure
> restitution and reparations. The return of stolen wealth, the closing of
> tax havens and other incentives to the continuing flow of resources from
> the South to the North must also be included among the commitments for
> immediate action.
> 5- Projects and programs aimed at dealing with the crises should not be
> loan-financed. Northern governments, corporations and the global elite
> that bear the greater part of the blame of such crises should pay. The
> crises cannot lead to further illegitimate indebtedness or the imposition
> of policies in the interest of the lender through further
> conditionalities. Moreover, financing for destructive projects should be
> immediately stopped and particular attention placed on avoiding any
> tendency to push forward with damaging and strongly questioned
> infrastructure projects or energy related projects such as agrofuels and
> nuclear power under the guise of "emergency measures".
> 6- End the power of Multilateral Finance and Trade Institutions such as
> the IMF, the World Bank Group, the regional banks and the WTO and impose
> sanctions for their responsibility in the current crises and the growth of
> illegitimate and social, ecological and historic debts. A reform of the
> quota system in favor of a few South countries will not be enough to
> change the logic of such institutions. New institutions should be
> developed at regional and global levels, based in principles of democracy,
> participation, respect for human, collective and environmental rights,
> sovereignty and self-determination.
> 7- Review and reverse trade agreements and investment protection treaties
> that impede countries from exercising their own sovereignty. This should
> include putting an end to the WTO current Doha Round, regional free trade
> agreements and the illegitimate International Centre for the Settlement of
> Investment Disputes (ICSID) of the World Bank Group, and reversing
> national treatment and other similar clauses as well as implementing
> changes in regulatory frameworks that now provide capital with full
> mobility. We reiterate also the need for full duty-free access of LDC
> products to developed country markets as stipulated in the Brussels
> Programme of Action.
> 8- Promote the re-foundation of regulatory institutions and mechanisms to
> put an end to the supremacy of financial interests over the rights of the
> peoples and the environment. This includes taking immediate steps to stop
> vulture funds, end tax havens, hedge funds, incentives for excessive
> profit-making and tax evasion mechanisms, private equity funds and to
> promote taxation of all financial transactions in order to end destructive
> speculation and stop the creation of financial conglomerates. Increasing
> ¨transparency¨ is not sufficient.
> 9- Support the construction of autonomous, regionally-based financing for
> development institutions and mechanisms based on economic, social,
> ecological, gender and intergenerational justice. The creation of ALBA,
> Peoples' Trade Agreements, and other South-South alliances of solidarity
> and complementarity, including also the South Bank and other new monetary
> and financial stabilization arrangements in South America, are potential
> avenues for confronting the consequences of the crises, recovering
> sovereignty and opening new horizons of more fundamental change. These
> should be supported through their appropriation by the peoples and new
> ones constructed in the different regions.
> 10- Guarantee access of all citizens to essential and strategic human
> rightssuch as health, education, water and sanitation, transport,
> financial services, telecommunications, pension funds and energy and
> natural resources by protecting them from privatization and rolling back
> the global trend to their mercantilization and oligopolization. Financial
> speculation should not be allowed to determine human rights compliance.
> Now is the time for the international community to put its creativity and
> strength behind the development of a global monetary and financial system
> based on the maximization of human and environmental rights rather than
> alleged profit rights. Solutions to the present crises should not be
> premised on re-establishing or saving a failed system, but on changing it.
> The UN can and must rise to this occasion.
> Jubilee South, February 2009
> [1] The Summary of a UNDP consultation with civil society groups on debt,
> "Avoiding the 2015 Debt Crisis", New York, May 29-30, 2008, is
> illustrative in this regard. http://content. undp.org/ go/newsroom/
> updates/poverty- www-news/ consultation- with-csos- on-debt-relief.
> en#presentations
> IX World Social Forum –Belém do Pará, Brazil, 2009
> Summary of the Declaration of the Assembly of Movements struggling to
> overcome Debt domination
> The Assembly stressed the threat of a new debt crisis as a result of the
> current crises, which are already generating a wave of new indebtedness
> and worsening repayment conditions. It also emphasized the urgent need to
> reject the exclusivity of the G20 and its unacceptable proposals to
> strengthen the power of the IFIs and transnationalized financial capital.
> The Assembly highlighted the growing convergence among anti-debt movements
> in the International South-North Campaign against Illegitimate Debt
> (www.illegitimatedeb t.org) and the historic breakthrough achieved through
> Ecuador’s comprehensive debt audit, the beginning of a similar audit in
> Paraguay, and Ecuador's decision not to continue paying some of the debt
> it claims to be illegitimate. In terms of global priorities, the Assembly
> calls on all movements to join in the fight for the non-payment of
> illegitimate debts and the restoration and reparation of historic,
> ecological and social debts. The Assembly also makes a call to participate
> and support, in particular: the undertaking of comprehensive Debt Audits;
> the Week of Action against the G20, War, and Crisis (March 28 to April 4),
> the Peoples' Tribunal on Ecological Debt (October 2009); and the Week of
> Global Action Against Debt and IFIs(October 7 -15, 2009), including the
> Day of struggle in defence of the Pachamama on October 12. The Assembly
> also calls on governments and movements in the region to put into
> operations the South Bank and other alternatives that can contribute to
> the recovery of financial sovereignty in the South.
> 9th World Social Forum
> Belém do Pará – Brazil 2009
> Declaration of the Assembly of Movements fighting to overcome debt
> domination 1
> The Assembly of Movements working on the Debt issue took place on February
> 1 within the context of the alliances day at the WSF 2009 held in Belem.
> It had the participation of several organisations and networks, with
> strong presence of member organisations of Jubilee South and the CADTM
> network. The conclusions set forth herein reflect the position of various
> anti-debt networks and movements which had already started an important
> convergence process, as shown by the WSF declaration of Nairobi in January
> 2007, launching the International South North Campaign on Illegitimate
> Debt, the publication of a common newsletter on illegitimate debt, the
> annual organisation of a Week of Global Action against Debt and
> International Financial Institutions, the recent study and strategy
> meeting held in Quito in September 2008, and the coordination to support
> initiatives and specific campaigns as well as the development of audit
> processes.
> Challenges posed by the current international situation
> Anti-debt movements and campaigns participating at the event have
> characterised the current conjunctural situation and challenges to be
> faced:
> 1.
> In spite of the massive publicity regarding debt relief and cancellation
> programmes launched by the World Bank and IMF (HIPC I, HIPC II, PRSP), the
> G8 (MDRI) and some regional banks, or by broad debt swap projects, the
> debt issue still represents an important South-North outlet for capital
> and resources and for the imposition of policies according to the
> interests of lenders. The South is still bleeding, with annual transfers
> amounting to nearly 400 billion dollars just in capital.
> 2.
> Parallel to this bleeding, a rapid increase in internal public debts has
> been registered. This causes an important flow of public resources which
> becomes incorporated into the same mechanisms, often controlled by the
> same actors, which profit from the flows resulting from external public
> debt service, thus maintaining the financial dependence of our economies
> and production systems.
> 3.
> The rapid reduction in the price of strategic raw materials in the global
> market and the aggravation of conditions to refinance the external debt of
> Southern countries, together with new loans pressed upon Southern
> countries, arguing that they are necessary to overcome the crisis,
> announce a new debt crisis that threatens many Southern countries in the
> short-term, including South American countries such as Argentina and
> Ecuador, and countries such as Brazil and Venezuela in the middle and
> long-term, in spite of the high levels of net international reserves they
> have accumulated.
> 4.
> The profound crisis of the capitalist system announces times of growing
> difficulties for Southern countries and for the working classes in the
> North. As always, new decisions and institutional mechanisms are going to
> be sought so that Southern peoples and countries and people living in
> poverty in the North end up paying for this crisis resulting from the
> unlimited aim of accumulation and the irresponsible de-regulation and
> hyper-financialisat ion processes of the economic game. Rises in debt
> payment flows, unemployment, and mass poverty, the dramatic increase in
> the amount of starving and malnourished people in our countries, which we
> are already experiencing, are direct consequences of these strategies in
> which debt and its restructuring process play a major role.
> 5.
> The shocking abundance of liquidity released by the system’s ruling
> countries differs from the meanest 100 billion dollars applied in the past
> decade to attempt to solve the still pending debt crisis, and the
> relatively reasonable resources – 80 billion dollars invested each year
> during 10 years according to UN estimates – needed by humankind to take
> significant steps in solving the most serious social problems
> (malnutrition, illiteracy, deficit in public health and education
> services, housing...). We cannot allow the continuation of this type of
> absurd and suicidal management of resources, resulting from the work of
> Peoples.
> 6.
> The answer of the ruling classes in Northern countries in view of the
> current serious crisis heads towards reinforcing the transnationalised
> financial capital and increasing speculative flows. For instance, a new
> speculative market on the sale of carbon emissions has been recently
> created in London.
> 7.
> The recent election of Barack Obama which arouses lots of hopes will not
> imply any susbstantial change to the orientation of US economic policies,
> if we take into account the members of the economic cabinet, made up among
> others by Paul Volker and Larry Summers, who played a major role in
> building the economic policy of the empire which has resulted in the
> current serious crisis.
> 8.
> The effort to use the G20 – which besides has already evidenced its
> inability to solve the crisis – is unacceptable for our nations. It
> represents an stratagem to conceal the fundamental sources of the crisis
> and continue marginalising Southern peoples and countries from
> decision-making spheres. We reject, in particular, the proposals being
> discussed with a view to reinforcing the mandate and resources of the IMF,
> World Bank and regional development banks which have been responsible for
> the present crisis.
> The answers of Peoples and our movements in view of the present
> conjunctural situation
> 1.
> We underline with satisfaction the growing convergence among anti-debt
> movements which have decided to consolidate a common platform of actions
> and struggles, respecting the differences still characterising them.
> 2.
> With regards to the debt issue, our movements have made significant
> progress from a conceptual, political, ideological and strategic point of
> view. We have moved from claiming the cancellation of external debts to
> the issue of debt illegitimacy; from campaigns focused on the financial
> debt to actions and campaigns implying a broader vision and including the
> financial, historical, social and ecological dimensions. Besides, our
> campaigns are achieving higher exchange and convergence levels with the
> struggles against free trade, militarisation, criminalisation of social
> protests, transnational companies, and agro-fuels and for the defence of
> food sovereignty, our territories and climate justice.
> 3.
> Following social mobilisations, we started to receive answers from
> governments. Among them, we highlight the fact that the Government of
> Norway acknowledged the irresponsible nature of part of the debt claimed
> from various Southern countries and consequently cancelled the pending
> claims.
> 4.
> The promotion of comprehensive and participative audits to debt processes
> is making rapid progress. We commend the audit carried out by the
> Ecuadorian government, which following a year of investigations, obtained
> conclusive results, thus clearly evidencing the illegitimate, fraudulent,
> illegal and criminal nature of the debt claimed from Ecuador. We also
> commend the decision made to suspend payment of some debt tranches owing
> to their proven illegitimacy. We call upon the government of Rafael Correa
> to continue acting according to the conclusions drawn by the Public Credit
> Audit Commission (CAIC) and to set a repudiation process into motion in
> defence of the rights of the peoples of Ecuador. The latter, of course,
> could serve as example and motivation for Southern countries to build a
> “Non payment of illegitimate external debts” front, demanding punishment
> for the guilty and reparation for crimes.
> 5.
> We support the decision made by President Fernando Lugo to launch an audit
> process of the bi-national debt related to Itaipu, between Paraguay and
> Brazil, in order to create new conditions within the development process
> in Paraguay and lay the foundations to promote relationships of justice,
> sovereignty and solidarity between the two peoples and countries.
> 6.
> We support the recent decision of the Brazilian Congress to set up a
> Parliamentary Investigation Commission (CPI) on the country’s indebtedness
> process. It represents a decisive step towards the implementation of an
> audit in one of the countries that has paid huge amounts of money by way
> of early debt payment and debt service in spite of mobilisations,
> including a Popular Consultation through which six million Brazilians
> demanded the suspension of all payments until the constitutional demand
> for an audit was fulfilled, and the citizen investigation that has managed
> to evidence several violations to the constitutional legality and
> international regulations in the management of the Brazilian public debt.
> 7.
> Similar initiatives are being implemented in several countries and
> regional instances, both in the South and the North, and will certainly
> receive the strong and enthusiastic support of our movements to advance in
> the process of liberation from debt slavery. The commitments announced by
> the governments of Bolivia and Venezuela, the good news regarding the
> resolutions of the European Parliament, the legislative system in Zimbabwe
> and Belgium, among others, confirm that we are experiencing new times,
> with an initial recognition of the destructive violence of debt, and of
> the fact that it is possible to confront it. It is also worth highlighting
> the launching of citizen audits in countries such as Philippines, Mali and
> Indonesia, among others. Whether official, parliamentary or citizen,
> audits should be undertaken within an environment of broad mobilisation,
> thus acknowledging the fact that they are tools of struggle rather than
> ends in themselves.
> 8.
> We protest against the shameful campaign of calumnies launched against our
> fellows María Lucia Fatorelli, Marcos Arruda, and others, by the ruling
> classes in Brazil through articles published in O Globo, aimed at ruining
> the reputation of people that have always defended the interests of
> Brazilians. We call upon all our organisations to defend them as well all
> those others contributing their knowledge to the audits and actions
> carried out with a view to establishing justice. The truth about the
> looting of our wealth through debt processes must be exposed to the public
> eye, those who are responsible must be punished and the peoples and
> countries affected must be repaired accordingly.
> 9.
> We commend the multiple efforts made by our movements in the context of
> Popular Court Cycles which have been translated into major progress in the
> field of the characterisation of financial, historical, social and
> ecological debts. The recent publications of Peoples’ Courts in Vienna
> (2006), New Delhi (2007), The Hague (2007), Lima (April 2008), Colombia
> (August 2008) and during the Third Americas Social Forum held in Guatemala
> (October 2008), among others, have facilitated the collection of of an
> outstanding documentation, thus evidencing the multiple crimes committed
> by transnational companies against our Peoples, with the support of
> international financial institutions and the strong indebtedness of
> Southern countries. These activities that are being carried out with a
> participative methodology associated with the struggles of indigenous
> movements in defence of the Pacha Mama and their territories, among
> others, represent quite significant advances which foresee victories in
> the protection of our common goods against the subjugating
> mercantilisation process of capitalism and the kingdom of impunity.
> Our priorities within the next months
> 1.
> We call upon all movements to join efforts in a broad process of struggles
> under the banner of “non payment of illegitimate debts” and “restitution
> and reparation” , which represents a strategic tool, aimed at reinforcing
> the struggle against impunity and at opening means to increase the
> North-South flow of resources and capital, in the context of a strong
> process of redistribution of wealth, thus starting to mend the dramatic
> consequences of over 527 years of looting.
> 2.
> We call upon all our movements to participate in the Week of Action from
> March 28 to April 4 against the G20 and its proposals to refom the system
> and global financial institutions which only aim at reinforcing the logic
> of looting and concentration. It is necessary to strengthen the debate and
> mobilisation, particularly in the countries of the Global South, regarding
> the development of alternatives leading to a true financial sovereingty.
> Likewise, it is necessary to warn about and denounce the dangerous
> reinforcement process of the IMF, World Bank and other regional banks as a
> response to the current situation of crisis.
> 3.
> We welcome the initiative of Jubilee South, the Southern Peoples Alliance
> of Creditors of Historical, Social and Ecological Debts, and the World
> Council of Churches to carry out a Peoples’ Court on the Ecological Debt
> in the next few months, and we call upon all movements and organisations
> to support and actively participate in its preparation and follow-up. The
> organisation of this Court will open new struggle scenarios, taking into
> account who the real creditors are, particularly within the present
> context of ecological destruction processes, including the reinforcement
> of the extractivist, privatising and mercantilist model regarding vital
> resources such as water, land, air, and acknowledging the need to restore
> and repair the Ecological Debt owed by the North to the South in order to
> face climate change.
> 4.
> We call upon movements and organisations to participate, the same as in
> previous years, in the Week of Global Action against Debt and IFIs, to be
> held from 7-15 October 2009 , joining efforts to continue enlarging and
> making more dynamic the International South-North Campaign on Illegitimate
> Debt and taking the opportunity to establish links with other movements
> and struggles for Climate Justice, Gender Equality, against Free Trade,
> Militarisation and Criminalisation. In this framework, we join the global
> Call to carry out a Day of Struggle in Defence of Pachamama on October 12
> and invite all our movements to participate.
> 5.
> We call upon all movements and organisations to carry out an active
> campaign against the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) which is
> celebrating its 50 th anniversary at the end of March in Medellin. It is
> an excellent occasion for us to say “50 Years is Enough, Reparations Now!”
> and to unveil IDB’s policies that represent one of the pillars of the
> empirialist domination system in our continent by means of the promotion,
> encouragement and development of projects, programmes and actions in the
> logic of the Washington Consensus. Our call aims to unleash a process of
> mobilisation in Medellin and in all our countries and to carry out
> multiple studies of participative cases that may allow to document,
> repudiate, demand reparations and sactions for IDB crimes against the
> peoples of our Abya Yala.
> 6.
> We call upon the Governments implied in the project of the Bank of the
> South to accelerate the implementation of this new institutional
> instrument which should be structured around a completely different logic
> from the current global financial architecture at the service of
> transnational capital. The Bank of the South must be an instrument at the
> service of the development of our countries within the logic of a solidary
> integration of our peoples. It must become a strategic instrument to
> recover the financial sovereignty capable of overcoming the capitalist
> logic that uses indebtedness as an instrument of domination of our
> countries, together with other innovations in the regional financial
> system. It is of pressing importance that the obstacles preventing the
> implementation of such an important project for the future of our nations
> be solved.
> 7.
> We call upon all the movements of the Americas to mobilise in order to
> participate either directly, from their country or their region at the
> People’s Summit to be held at Port-of-Spain / Trinidad and Tobago from
> 16-18 April. This summit must be an event of reaffirmation of the things
> achieved in previous editions from 1998 onwards. We will strengthen our
> achievements towards the transformation of our societies (as it is taking
> place in various national scenarios) and will oppose any attempt from the
> United States and its allies to resuscitate the FTAA with new ornaments
> and conceptual manipulations, invoking hemispheric security and
> prosperity.
> 8.
> We call upon all our movements to express solidarity with the struggle for
> the defence of the rights of Palestin people .
> 9.
> We call upon all our movements to support the Solidarity Campaign with the
> People of Haiti that is struggling to be freed from the military
> occupation, to be granted the cancellation of the illegitimate external
> debt claimed by IFIs and for the implementation of a solidary
> reconstruction project. During 2008, several new voices were heard
> demanding the cancellation of the debt claimed from Haiti, which in spite
> of the deteriorating living conditions of its population (it is calculated
> that over 3 million people are suffering from growing food insecurity) is
> still paying the weekly amount of over 1 million dollars. Likewise, we
> highlight the importance of the struggles for sovereingty of still
> colonized Caribbean countries as well as the reparation of said historical
> debts.
> 10.
> We commend the outstanding success of ALBA (Bolivarian Alternative for the
> Americas) particularly in the field of literacy, health care and public
> education. A solidary integration among Peoples may bring about – within a
> short time – impressive qualitative results in what regards to improving
> living conditions. Nevertheless, we acknowledge the fact that there are
> situations in which some of the agreements signed are being diverted from
> their goals and monopolised by corrupt bureaucracies; the resulting
> benefits being absorbed by groups belonging to traditional oligarchies.
> This is why Peoples should take ownership of these instruments since they
> represent wonderful tools for social investment and research with a view
> to changing the energy system. In this sense, and as it was decided at the
> Fourth Assembly of Caribbean People in Cuba and at the Coordinating
> Meeting of Jubilee South/Americas in Managua (both in July 2008), we call
> upon our movements to take greater ownership of new agreements and invite
> them to organise a summit of Caribbean and Central American social
> movements on the Petrocaribe agreements and the energy crisis.
> The current period is decisive for the future of our Peoples and
> humankind. We should encourage increasing mass struggles, questioning the
> grounds of illegitimate debt processes and the capitalist system as a
> whole. We should face the present crisis of the system in order to make a
> real way out possible with a view to the implementation of new society
> systems where the following would be basic principles: the sovereingty of
> peoples, having good living standards and living in harmony with nature.
> We call upon the Governments of Southern countries to rapidly organise a
> broad front for the non-payment of the illegitimate financial debt, also
> acknowledging their status as creditors of huge historical, social,
> ecological and financial debts. Such front must offer spaces for both
> resistance and offensive. The Governments of Southern countries should not
> participate in the farce of the G20 and should fight for the emergence of
> a new international financial architecture that addresses the rights and
> basic needs of our communities, peoples, countries and regions.
> Long live the struggle of the Peoples! We don’t owe, we don’t pay! We don’t
> want to pay for the crisis of rich people! Down with capitalism! We,
> Southern Peoples, are the real creditors! Reparations Now!
> 1 A summary of this declaration was presented by Camille Chalmers during
> the Assembly of Assemblies held on February 1, 2009.

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