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Ergebnisse des Treffens des Internationalen Rates des WSF vom 20. bis 22. März 2006 in Nairobi / Kenia (Westafrika)

(in englischer Sprache)

WORLD SOCIAL FORUM IN NAIROBI – DATE AND VENUE
 
The WSF will be held in Nairobi from 20th to 25th of January 2007.

The main part of activities will be held in a large park in the very centre of the town. The main building of the Kenyatta International Conference Center will be used too, such as some buildings of the University –which will be used for the Youth Camp. There is territorial continuity between all the venues.

The town is a hard one –a rich and modern downtown and the largest African slum after Soweto. The Government spend 22% of national budget for the foreign debt payment. The majority of the population lives in deep poverty. There are strong problems concerning democracy, human rights and corruption.

THE AFRICAN ORGANIZING COMMITTEE
 
The African movements presented to the International Council a very good “concept paper”: very radical in the analysis on neoliberism, attention paid to innovation concerning issues and methodologies, and the commitment to organize a WSF capable to combine the open space for debate and a real convergence of struggles, campaign, actions.

The meeting with the Nairobi organizations involved in the process was very interesting, showing how culture, music, street theatre, social animation can be excellent ways to communicate antiliberistic contents: the fight against foreign debt, WTO and WB, water and health privatization, for human rights.

Different caravans of people will be organized from different African countries to reach the WSF in Nairobi: it’s a way not only to facilitate cheap transportation, but also to mobilize the African society at the grassroot and popular level.

The Secretariat of the African Organizing Committee are willing to attend the EFS –around 15 people: there is a request to organize a space for the presentation of the WSF in Athens, and to cover their expenses.

WSF PREPARATORY PROCESS: CONSULTATION ON STRUGGLES

In order to help a real convergence of struggles in the WFS, able to offer the possibility to use the WSF for strengthening alliances and creating new mobilizations, in the next week a global consultation on struggles will be launched.

It will be a survey, to be spread in different ways all over the globe, asking groups, organizations and networks to tell about their struggles, their campaigns, their need in order to be more effective, their demands to the WSF process in order to be more useful.

The result of this work will be used in order to build the WSF program: beside the self-organized activities, the need to facilitate networks gathering is strongly felt, in order to come out from the WSF with concrete results in terms of alliances and mobilization.

INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL RE-ORGANIZATION

The debate about the re-organization of the International Council is still going on, and it goes slowly.

The discussion about the formal relation with the Regional, Continental and National Forum –open since at least one year ago- is still to be done.

The situation is different in each continent, and it create an additional difficulties to the debate, but we feel it’s important to make pressure on it and to take part in this discussion.

WSF NEXT STEP

There is an open discussion on the next step, after Nairobi.

A part of the International Council believe it will be important to organize a WSF next year, in 2008, in order not to stop the convergence process of different movements and experiences.

Some other believe it could be better to leave 2008 for developing and enlarging the national, regional and continental process.

It’s an old discussion, in which now there is a new element –strongly supported by different Italian representatives: the proposal made in Nairobi to organize in the 2008 a global day of mobilization –a real global one, prepared and promoted in a way which can let us to have million people in the streets all over the planet, with a strong and simple platform to be launched in Nairobi with a global agreement.

The global day of action could be useful in order to provide social movements around the world with a tool for mobilization, alliances, networking, for visibility and political presence in a very important year –the USA elections will be held in 2008.

The discussion on this proposal will go on in the next months.

CHALLENGES FOR ESF PROCESS

All over the world the Social Forum process is going on with positive results: many national Forums was born, such as regional process (the Maghreb Social Forum is going to be held in 2007, in May 2006 Mexican and USA movements will held a Forum at the border focussing on the Wall of Shame, in 2007 the USA Social Forum will take place).

Looking at this situation, we feel it’s crucial to use the Athens ESF as an occasion for a real re-launch of the European process: strengthening our capability of enlargement and mobilization is vital not only for us but also for the other continental process –who should need to find strong alliances and partnership in the First World.

Raffaella Bolini, Piero Bernocchi

 

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