The third Anti-Imperialist Solidarity Meeting, for Democracy and against Neoliberalism, which began on November 1 in Havana, Cuba, successfully concluded on November 3. The event saw the participation of around 1,350 delegates of social movements, solidarity organizations and political forces together with renowned intellectuals from over 86 countries from across the globe.
The first secretary of the Cuban Communist Party, Commander Raúl Castro, Cuban president Miguel Díaz Canel and Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, took part in the closing ceremony of the event. Together, the popular leaders called to strengthen social struggle and unity against exclusion, impoverishment and privatization, imposed by the neo-liberal model of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and global capitalism. The former president of El Salvador, Sánchez Cerén and the executive secretary of the Sao Paulo Forum, Mónica Valente, also attended the closing ceremony.
The primary objective of the encounter was to express support and solidarity with the Cuban Revolution in the face of the harsh economic sanctions and commercial blockade imposed by the government of the United States, led by president Donald Trump, against the country. Under the banner of “Hands off Cuba”, the delegates present at the conference unanimously demanded justice, and an end to the blockade against Cuba.
In the closing declaration, it was expressed that the “times of hope are opened, unity is a duty, mobilization is a cry of order, popular organization is an imminent task and integration is a strategy that will lead us to victory (…) we pledge our solidarity with Cuba, mobilizing ourselves in permanent, continuous and systematic actions against the aggressive escalation of the imperialist.”
“The final declaration of this meeting reflects the enthusiasm of this historic moment, the hope that has risen and the strength that we represent as an alternative to savage capitalism, imperialist domination and neoliberalism,” said Maduro.
Thanking the people’s movements for their solidarity, Canel said, “The years have shown that Cuba has the support of the people fighting for justice.”
Another important objective of the conference was to strengthen support for other anti-imperialist, anti-neoliberal, democratic and pro-people processes that are developing in the continent and, as a result, are suffering attacks seeking to destabilize them.
In this regard, it was decided that the rebellion of the Chilean people, the popular uprising in Haiti, the battle that Bolivian president Evo Morales and Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro are fighting, the struggle of the Brazilian people for Lula’s freedom, among others, must be the priorities for the attention of the social movements and left-wing parties gathered at the event.
Another key objective of the meeting was to identify and discuss viable alternatives that could help raise the political and social influence of the movements and the left-wing and progressive political parties that defend Latin American emancipatory proposals.
During the conference, the fascist attitude of the Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro was also repudiated. It was demanded that the Colombian government, led by President Ivan Duque, must put into practice the integral implementation of the peace agreements with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and resume the peace talks with the National Liberation Army (ELN).
The victory of the leftist Alberto Fernández in the Argentine general elections, the struggle of the Puerto Ricans for their independence, and the struggle that the Palestinian and Sahrawi people have been carrying out for years, were commended.
The meeting was held as part of the Continental Gathering for Democracy and against Neoliberalism, a process of mobilization and struggle that brings together various movements and social organizations from across Latin America and the Carribbean, that began in Havana in 2015.
Social movements and organizations, such as the Latin American Coordinator of Rural Organizations (CLOC) of the Via Campesina, World March of Women (MMM), Trade Union Confederation of the Americas (TUCA-CSA), Friends of the Latin American and the Caribbean Land (ATALC), Jubilee South America, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Center, Social Movements of ALBA, among others, are some of the member organizations of the process.