People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 29

July 22, 2012


'First Meeting of BRICS Peace and Solidarity Organisations Held'


THE meeting of the peace organisations of the BRICS countries was organised on the 17th and 18th of July 2012 in New Delhi. The meeting was hosted by the All India Peace and Solidarity Organisation (AIPSO). Though technically it is the second meeting (as the first meeting of the peace organisations of China, Russia and India was held in Beijing in 2009), this is for the first time that the peace organisations of the entire BRICS grouping countries took part. Welcoming the participants in the meeting, who represent all the countries of the BRICS grouping Brazil, Russia, India and China Pallab Sen Gupta, the General Secretary of the AIPSO, welcomed and introduced them to the floor.


Sitaram Yechury, member Presidium of AIPSO and Polit Bureau member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) inaugurated the meeting, while DP Tripathi, Vice President of the AIPSO and General Secretary of the Nationalist Congress Party presided over the inaugural session.


Sitaram Yechury, in his inaugural address stated that BRICS is one of the important developments in the world in the recent past and is an example of the growing multi-polarity. He said that this growing tendencies of 'multi-polarity' should be encouraged as they represent the weakening of the US and its designs to make this world uni-polar, under its control. This, according to him is even more important in today's context, when the world is reeling under severe economic crisis bordering on recession. To come out of this crisis, he said, the developed countries are trying to shift the burdens of the economic crisis on to the shoulders of the developing countries. This, they are carrying out through the negotiations on climate change and Doha round of negotiations. Yechury also stated that the G-8 is expanded to G-20 not as an act of charity of the developed countries but due to their need and necessity of the developing countries for bailing out of the crisis. He also pointed out how the Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) are also used to burden the developing countries, giving the example of the ongoing discussions on the FTA between India and the European Union (EU).


Yechury also stated that developed imperialist countries are not only using economic means to come out of the crisis, but are also using the military means. The recent NATO led military attacks in Libya and the interventions in Syria all point to the military interventions of the imperialism to control the resource rich West Asia/North African region. He said there is a conscious design to redraw the map of the world according to the imperialist needs. It is in this background, that groupings like BRICS become important, he stated and brought to notice the role played by Russia and China in UN, vetoing the US led efforts to impose sanctions on Syria and also the recent Delhi Declaration of the BRICS.


Yechury, pointing out to the different types of governments in each of the BRICS countries, stated that it naturally reflects in the positions that they adopt on various international issues. He said that in spite these differences, it is the duty of the peace organisations in these countries to ensure that their respective governments take firm positions for the protection of world peace and protection of the rights of the developing countries. In this background, he said that the importance of this meeting of all peace organisations working in the BRICS countries becomes important. He thanked all the participants of the meeting for accepting the invitation of the AIPSO and welcomed them to India. Formally inaugurating the meeting, he said that he is just flagging these ideas, which he said was confident that they would be further enriched in the course of their two-day deliberations.


DP Tripathi in his presidential address brought out the fact that the BRICS grouping represents 43 percent of the world's population and said that thus its views cannot be ignored. He also stated that all the BRICS countries share a common legacy of struggle against colonialism and for the establishment of progressive regimes in their respective government. He also stated that the recent summit of the BRICS held in Delhi, came out with a progressive Delhi Declaration. Explaining some of the aspects in the Declaration, he said that it is the duty of the peace organisations to strengthen these positive aspects. He called upon the participants to oppose and fight against forced globalisation.


After the brief inaugural session, the discussions among the participants were conducted in two thematic sessions Theme 1: The emergence of BRICS a positive development in international relations a peoples' perspective and Theme 2: BRICS positions on international developments (peace, disarmament, development, environment democratic world order etc) and the tasks of the peace movements. The presentations from the representatives of the participating countries was followed by a discussion involving all the participants. Socorro Gomes, the president of the World Peace Council, represented the Brazilian delegation, Chen Huaifan, Deputy Secretary-General of the Chinese Peoples' Association for Peace and Disarmament (CPAPD) and Hou Hongyu, Director of Research Division, CPAPD spoke on behalf of the Chinese delegation. Victor Kamyshanov, President of the International Federation for Peace and Conciliation represented the Russian delegation, while Chris Matlhako from the South African Peace Initiative spoke on behalf of the South Africans.


Nilotpal Basu, General Secretary, AIPSO, Kamal Mitra Chenoy, Prabir Purkaystha, Vice Presidents, of AIPSO, Baren Mukharjee, (Forward Bloc) Member of Parliament, and Anuradha Chenoy intervened on behalf of the Indian delegation.


D. Raja, member Presidium of the AIPSO and Secretary of the Communist Party of India and Manish Tewari, National Spokesperson Indian National Congress, addressed the participants in the afternoon session and enriched the audience with their interventions.


The meeting unanimously passed three resolutions: (i)against the intervention in the internal affairs of Syria (ii) in support of the Palestine and (iii) condemning the coup in Paraguay. The final communique of the meeting was adopted after detailed discussions on the draft that was proposed by the AIPSO.


The final communique decided to organise similar meetings under the title 'BRICS Peoples' Forum for peace, disarmament and sustainable development' regularly before the summit of the BRICS countries. It also decided to organise seminars on topical issues related to the consequences of neo-liberal and imperialist globalisation and maintain regular interactions among fraternal partners. The meeting also decided to mobilise people of their respective countries and apply pressure on the governments so that they can take correct positions on all international developments. The meeting also decided to urge the BRICS countries to deepen South-South cooperation in all spheres.


The communique also condemned the sanctions on Iran and the expansion of US Military bases around the world. It demanded the democratisation of UN and other military institutions and for an enlarged say of the developing countries in these institutions. The communique also said that all efforts to strengthen multi-polarity in the world should be encouraged and also criticised the efforts of the developed countries for trying to force their policies, that had brought out the current economic crisis on the world, on the developing countries. The communique also criticised the role of the developed countries during the climate change negotiations.


The communique called upon all the peace loving people to come together and join hands for nuclear disarmament, environmental protection and sustainable development.


Pallab Sen Gupta, general secretary of the AIPSO proposed the vote of thanks, while Chris Matlhako thanked the hosts on behalf of the foreign participants.