La Via Campesina, founded in 1993, is an international movement bringing together millions of peasants, landless workers, indigenous people, pastoralists, fishers, migrant farmworkers, small and medium-size farmers, rural women and peasant youth from around the world. Built on a solid sense of unity and solidarity, it defends peasant agriculture for food sovereignty.
Cross-posted from the La Via Campsina website
HALT THE GENOCIDE! CEASEFIRE NOW!
In response to the unprecedented and genocidal war being waged on the people of Palestine, the international peasant movement that is La Via Campesina joins the growing call to boycott COP28. In solidarity with the peasants, fisherfolk and working families of Occupied Palestine, we stand united in our global demand that all people and governments act now to end Israel’s genocidal war on Palestinians, both in Gaza and the West Bank. A ceasefire is urgent – now!
While the Israeli government continues its war crimes in Gaza – bombing homes, hospitals, mosques and churches, massacring innocent civilians (including over 4,000 children) and leaving tens of thousands maimed, injured and traumatized – armed settlers backed by Occupation forces are waging their own war across the West Bank. As a Movement that struggles for the full realization of all rights for all peoples, we of La Vía Campesina cannot in good conscience participate in the UNFCCC climate negotiations while a textbook case of genocide is being waged on members of our community, their rights and sovereignty completely denied. There is no climate justice without human rights!
As we bear witness to this violence, we are especially concerned about the greenwashing of colonization and apartheid at this year’s COP28 in Dubai. Israel’s participation obscures the ongoing genocide and redirects global attention from the crimes it commits. The hypocrisy and abuse of many imperialist and polluting governments at COP28 is further revealed by the host government for the climate talks, the UAE, a major oil producer and human rights violator, and the COP Presidency – a billionaire oil executive! The corruption of the UNFCCC must end!
Our decision to boycott COP28 is also our ratification of a deep commitment to and solidarity with a global climate justice movement rooted in popular struggles for human rights and restored relations with Mother Earth. Towards this year’s COP, we dedicate our collective voice to demand an inmediate cease fire now! Palestinian rights are human rights!
NO MORE CORPORATE COPS! CLIMATE JUSTICE NOW!
COP28 is aiming to produce the first collective emissions report card through the Global Stocktake. We remain vigilant as we hold all governments to account for their bare-minimum pledges to keep global temperatures below 2 degrees, with a goal toward 1.5. We continue to apply pressure and expose the gaps and problems that primarily result from the lack of action by historical polluters whose commitments so far have not reflected their fair share of emissions reductions or demonstrated attention to historic responsibility.
In our quest for climate justice, we, La Via Campesina remain dedicated to building Food Sovereignty through a just transition. This approach acknowledges and upholds the rights of peasants, promoting agroecology as a means to cool the planet. As peasant-led food systems and vast bodies of independent research demonstrate, peasant agroecology practiced by peasant and Indigenous communities offers huge potentials for helping to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change, while sustaining and improving community well-being, democracy, cooperation, and peace.
At COP28, industrial agribusinesses will be advancing their interests through the so-called Food Systems and Agriculture Agendaand the Agenda on Regenerative Landscapes. Many world leaders have already signed onto the Leaders Declaration on Resilient Food Systems and Sustainable Agriculture, spearheaded by the greenwashed COP Presidency. We reject these attempts at greenwashing industrial agriculture and further entrenching corporate markets and technologies. Under the banner of sustainability, these initiatives do more to concentrate power and resources than to actually reduce emissions from the industrial food chain, which account for more than a third of total global emissions!
We reject the weak and meaningless Net Zero pledges that co-opt and undermine meaningful action on the climate crisis. We reject carbon pricing and offsets in the Paris Agreement and the deceptive formulations including carbon dioxide removals (CDR), nature-based solutions (NBS), climate Smart agriculture, carbon farming and the other dubious and unscientific market and offsetting schemes being pushed through Article 6. These undermine food sovereignty and are already fueling land grabbing around the world. Our land is not a carbon sink!
We stand firmly against all attempts by powerful governments to appoint the World Bank as manager of Loss and Damage Fund. If successful, this move will give the US and other historic emitters undue power and authority over climate finance, significantly undermining Global South governments and local communities, and deepening global power hierarchies.
Rooted in global climate justice principles, we continue to fight for reparations for historic debt and injustice. All climate finance must be in the hands of communities (not the banks!), must come in the form of grants (not loans!), and must prioritize both adaptation and mitigation.
Standing with the climate justice movement and all peoples of the world, we declare:
Palestinian Rights are Human Rights! Ceasefire Now!
No Climate Justice without Respect for Human Rights, International Law and Self Determination!
Food Sovereignty and Agroecology Are Solutions to the Climate Crisis!
GLOBALIZE THE STRUGGLE! GLOBALIZE HOPE!