Nicaragua participates in Latin America Conference 2019
NSC News | Monday, 2 December 2019 |
Over 500 activists attended this year’s Latin America Conference at Friends House in London on 23 November.
As well as attending a range of 24 seminars options, rallies, workshops and film showings delegates browsed solidarity stalls from solidarity campaigns, book stalls and progressive organisations.
Among the Latin American speakers was Sandinista MP Raquel Dixon and ambassador to the UK Guisell Morales. Raquel, who is from the Caribbean Coast, became was the first Afro descendant woman ever to the elected to the National Assembly in 2006.
The weeks leading up to the conference saw huge turbulence in the region, including the military coup in Bolivia which ousted President Evo Morales, a million Chileans on the streets protesting against the neoliberal agenda of billionaire president Piñera, as well as huge protests in Haiti, Ecuador and Colombia against their governments.
US intervention intensifies following the military coup in Bolivia
In addition, US intervention in the region has intensified making this is a key time for solidarity with progressive social movements.
As Cuban ambassador Teresita Vicente commented: “The most racist, rancid, reactionary forces in Latin America have found a staunch ally in Donald Trump.”
This was epitomised after the military coup in Bolivia when President Trump congratulated the ‘ Bolivian people for demanding freedom and the Bolivian military for abiding by its oath to protect not just a single person, but Bolivia’s constitution. ‘
He then referred to the elected governments of Venezuela and Nicaragua as ‘illegitimate regimes’ warning ‘that democracy and the will of the people will always prevail. We are now one step closer to a completely democratic, prosperous, and free Western Hemisphere.’
Peace, security and respect for human rights
In her plenary session speech and seminars Raquel Dixon highlighted the success of the Sandinista government’s poverty reduction programmes including free healthcare and education and infrastructure development particularly on the Caribbean Coast
Raquel also stressed that after the violence and polarisation of 2018, the overwhelming majority of Nicaraguans want dialogue, peace, stability, respect for their basic human rights, and a secure future for themselves and their families.
The US role in the climate emergency
Professor Noam Chomsky was interviewed by former Guardian foreign editor Victoria Brittain via video link. Referring to the climate crisis Professor Chomsky commented: “We face a historic threat to the future of our civilisation: and the world's most powerful country, the United States, is racing to push us off the edge of the cliff”.
The climate emergency and the example of Nicaragua
Guisell and Raquel spoke in a seminar on the climate emergency highlighting the way in which Nicaragua has taken a radical stand internationally calling for far greater political will on the part of the largest emitters.
Nicaragua is only responsible for 0.03% of global emissions but is contributing to reductions through a shift to renewable energy (25% to 62% in 12 years), reafforestation and recycling initiatives combined with education.