Statement by the FSP and the EL in the scope of the second EU CELAC summit
The 2nd Meeting of Heads of State and Government of the member countries of the European Union and Community of Latin American and Caribbean States will take place on 10 and 11 of next June in Brussels on the topic “Shaping our common future: working for prosperous, cohesive and sustainable societies for our citizens”.
This meeting is part of a long list of bi-regional summits that have been held since 1999. Since then, the European Union has been negotiating association agreements and free trade treaties that have left little room for a true political dialogue, and with a stronger focus on assistance than on a true project in favour of development. Finally, the orientation that the European Union has given to the negotiations corresponds to its own objectives of consolidating competitiveness and the predominance of its transnational companies thanks to trade liberalisation and to the protection of its investments.
It is within this scope that the representatives of the parties members of the São Paulo Forum and the Party of the European Left met in Brussels on 7 and 8 May 2015 wish to express their proposals backed by the aspirations of the peoples on both continents.
The profound systemic crisis that the peoples of Europe are undergoing has succeeded in affecting the peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean and other continents. In Europe this crisis is being faced by the European institutions, with the implementation of structural adjustment policies that impose austerity and the devaluation of labour and salaries, with fiscal policies favourable to big business and financial sectors, and job insecurity and the exacerbation of competition in the name of competitiveness are legalized.
Living conditions are continuing to worsen and unemployment and marginalisation have reached a large number of sectors of the population.
These same policies favour the emergence of racist and xenophobic forces that recall times when the European continent lived under the threat of obscurantist forces provoking wars and genocide.
In Latin America, the peoples have decided to leave behind the times of the Washington consensus that imposed policies that were similar to those nowadays applied in Europe by the Troika. A significant number of countries have elected progressive governments that are successfully implementing policies favourable to employment, the development of social protection and social programmes that have freed millions of people from poverty. Social justice and the redistribution of wealth produced have allowed for democracies to become stable and to favour the emergence of dynamic and fairer democracies. In Europe, the Greek people has chosen a political option that oppose the neoliberal logic and that propose an alternative to the austerity.
The debts in Latin America and the Caribbean have been substantially renegotiated or has been submitted to audits, showing that there exist different solutions to those that are imposed on the peoples of Europe, no matter how much the human cost is and with the sole concern of meeting the requirements of a financial sector mostly responsible for the current situation.
The São Paulo Forum and the Party of the European Left regard as worrying the escalation that occurred in the Ukraine and call on the parties in the conflict to make extra efforts in the pursuit of a political and negotiated solution that excludes all types of violence.
The São Paulo Forum and the Party of the European Left consider that the military interventions and the preponderance of interference policies that have existed for the last 25 years, in particular in the Middle East, have deepened and exacerbated divisions between peoples. The European Union, by participating in these actions, strengthens the militarisation of international relations and rejects the possibility of being one autonomous and proactive voice on behalf of peace.
In Latin America and the Caribbean, declared a peace zone and free of arms of mass destruction, the last two major conflicts existing in the region, the Colombian conflict and the attempts by the United States to submit Cuba to its designs, have positively evolved on the basis of negotiation and dialogue.
Cuba and the USA are aiming at normalizing their diplomatic relations. This is a significant event in the history of the continent. The Forum of Sao Paulo and the EL are pleased for the resumption of the dialogue between Cuba and the EU. This relationship based on the respect and non-interference, should lead as quickly as possible to the annulment of the common position adopted in 1996 by the EU. The EU must act in a more certain way for the lifting of the US blockade against Cuba.
The Foro de Sao Paulo and the European Left absolutely endorse the dialogue between the FARC and the Colombian government for a just and democratic peace that guarantees political participation and social justice. A dialogue that must be widen to other forces as the ELN.
We believe that removing the FARC-EP and ELN from the list of terrorist organizations of the European Union would be an important political sign for peace.
The FSP and the EL rest in solidarity with Venezuela expressed by the CELAC against Barack Obama executive order declaring that country as a threat to its security.
Multilateralism and the UN are being increasingly more marginalised or being made use of on behalf of the interest of the major powers. The São Paulo Forum and the Party of the European Left advocate a Euro-Latin American relationship that will work towards a multilateralism that respects people’s rights.
The parties members of the São Paulo Forum and the Party of the European Left consider that the European Union and Community of Latin American and Caribbean States must be the actors in a new type of relationship whose main objective is to bring the peoples’ close together to work on behalf of a cooperation that will focus on human development, social justice and action for peace and disarmament. The agreements proposed must respect the approaches that peoples have implemented in terms of development and the environment.
The inclusion of clauses respecting democracy and human rights cannot be mere rhetoric and must be achieved by way of mechanisms ensuring the participation of the organisations, social movements and parliaments. It is not acceptable that negotiations on agreements and free trade treaties are carried out ignoring the repeated violations of human rights, persecutions and assassinations, as has been the cases of Columbia, Honduras, Peru, Guatemala and Mexico.
The European Union and CELAC must unite to support the initiatives set up for the creation of regulatory and re-structuring instruments of the sovereign debts, as well as the implementation of a legally binding international instrument in human rights for transnational corporations and other companies.
Trade between Latin America and the European Union must be a strain of development and not a way to impose an unfair relationship that will destroy national industries.
Truly effective action in favour of the fight against climate change requires a redefinition of the role of trade in development policies. The rules of international trade have been defined to benefit large conglomerations that produce and export and ignore the right of every human being living in in a unique ecosystem that can exhaust its limits.
Against the human drama that is taking place in the Mediterranean Sea in which thousands have died trying to reach European shores, more than ever we support the option of respecting the rights of mobility and settlement of human beings. This right is therefore even more legitimate as this mass exodus is the result of wars and conflicts and therefore the consequence of erroneous policies and the pillage of natural resources of which are not unrelated the European powers. Only joint action with those who emigrate and the abandonment of the neo-colonial visions can provide an alternative to the current situation.
To strengthen the principles of multilateralism that should lead relations between sovereign nations, the FSP and the EL support the claim of the government and people of Argentina of the Falkland Islands sovereignty, calling the UK government to comply with the UN resolution 2065 to set up a table for dialogue, and the EU to assume a responsible attitude.
We refuse the logic of domination underlying the proposals put forward within the framework of the Transatlantic Treaty and Transpacific Treaty. The relations between the European Union and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States must not be part of such a logic seeking to shape and maintain relations between peoples according to neoliberal standards that our peoples refuse.
The São Paulo Forum and the Party of the European Left underline the need to reach an agreement between European and Latin American countries in the COP21 meeting, which shall take place in Paris next December leading to an agreement on the strategy on climate change. It is urgent due to the consequences being felt in different points of the planet. The position claimed by developing countries in favour of the recognition of a shared and differentiated responsibility of States must be taken into consideration by industrialised countries that former colonizers of other continents also followed.
The European Union must listen to the proposals of Latin American countries with regard to the protection of intellectual property that must cease to be a way of protecting the interests of multinationals to the detriment of rights to health and education.
A true political dialogue must make of the European Union and CELAC actors decided in favour of disarmament and the non-proliferation treaty and a proactive force in favour of the creation of frameworks for the prevention and solution of conflicts. Latin America and Caribbean have proposals and experience in this area, the European Union can become an example by accepting to become part of a negotiated disarmament process.
The Foro de Sao Paulo and the European Left propose the development and sponsorship of social initiatives for social peace initiatives such as "network of Latin America and the Caribbean and the EU of Universities for peace" and "network of arts organizations in Latin America and Caribbean and EU in favor of peace ".
The Forum of Sao Paulo and the Party of the European Left, in its capacity as regional entities incorporating various progressive forces in Latin America and Europe want to get involved in the action for true integration that is based on cooperation, complementarity and solidarity between our peoples. Together, we will continue to work to create the necessary convergences that advance this objective.