Occupy Wall Street against ‘free’ trade with Colombia

Democracy Now! in the USA says about this video:

Colombian, Korean and Panamanian Activists Condemn White House Support for New “Free Trade” Deals

Organizers held a teach-in at Occupy Wall Street on Monday about “free trade agreements” with Colombia, Panama and South Korea now pending in Congress that will expand the market for national corporations and financial corporations from the United States.

“Essentially, it tries to institute once more the things that caused this financial crisis in the first place,” says Sukjong Hong, an organizer with Nodutdol for Korean Community Development. “It also opens the door to outsourcing more American jobs.”

Carlos Salamanca, member of AFSCME Local 372, adds that the Colombian free trade agreement is “the continuation of what’s going on in Colombia, supporting the government who are not doing anything to stop the killing of workers in Colombia, the union members, the human rights activists, and the persecution against the indigenous and Afro-Colombians’ leadership over there.” [includes rush transcript]

USA: The United Steelworkers (USW) warned Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at the weekend that their Colombian comrades face an “elevated threat” thanks to the passage of a free-trade deal: here.

Voters elected anti-corruption crusader Gustavo Petro as mayor of Bogota on Sunday, the first time an ex-guerilla has won Colombia‘s second-most important elected office: here.

Secret Service Agents Relieved of Duty in Colombia amid Alleged Misconduct: here.

A Colombian academic jailed for his research on social inequality and the government’s war with Farc said at the weekend that “a chain of solidarity” led to his freedom: here.

There was a Guardian piece over the weekend about Western banks ‘reaping billions from Colombian cocaine trade’ which is well worth a look. It highlights a practise we really hear very little about from the mainstream media – Western banks profiteering from drug money: here.

Seoul residents came out in force today to protest at a new free trade agreement with the United States even as US President Barack Obama welcomed his South Korean counterpart Lee Myung Bak to the White House: here.

Police attacked protesters with water cannon outside the South Korean parliament today at a demonstration against a free trade agreement with the US: here.

Inside Occupy Wall Street: Journalist-Participant Describes What Life Is Really Like at Zuccotti Park: here.

A section of the Occupy Wall Street demonstration made its way uptown Tuesday for a march up Fifth Avenue past the luxury apartment buildings of New York City’s multi-millionaires and billionaires: here.

Occupy Wall Street activists were due to rally outside investment bank JP Morgan Chase as the Morning Star went to press today – one day after a “millionaire’s march” targeted the bank’s boss Jamie Dimon on its path through New York’s wealthiest areas: here.

Protesters camp out at Gates Foundation, demands funds for homeless: here.

This video is called Naomi Klein speaks out at Occupy Wall Street rally in Liberty Square (Zuccotti Park) on October 6, 2011.

Boston Police carried out an early morning raid on anti-Wall Street protesters Tuesday, arresting 100 people in a violent attack on the Occupy Boston protest: here.

Occupy Boston: “They came down with dogs, batons, riot gear, scare tactics”: here.

Occupy Detroit holds first meeting: here.

Occupy Portland protests expand: here.

25 thoughts on “Occupy Wall Street against ‘free’ trade with Colombia

  1. Contract agreement disputed by Colombian and international labor activists

    A group of Colombian and international labor activists set out from Bogota for the eastern province of Meta on October 10 to protest an agreement signed between the Pacific Rubiales Energy Corporation and workers at the Puerto Gaitan oilfields. By Monday night, about 500 peaceful protesters had already arrived in Puerto Gaitan to call for better labor rights and to condemn the agreement.

    USO oil workers union president Rodolfo Vecino called the agreement “a dirty move” contrived between the company and the Mines and Energy Ministry. The “alleged agreement,” according to Vecino, includes unacceptable concessions. Although it stipulates some hiring and investment in the community, union leaders said the concessions do not adequately address the needs of the poor community.

    About 7,000 of the area’s 12,000 oil workers struck in September over issues of salary parity, contract labor and union rights. The strike was marked by firings of union supporters, attacks by riot police and worker resistance. The workers returned to work September 22 only after receiving assurances from Pacific Rubiales that it would engage in dialogue over the points of contention.

    The CUT labor federation arranged the caravan in conjunction with the USO. Efe reported, “The caravan includes representatives of the U.S. AFL-CIO, the International Trade Union Confederation and the World Federation of Trade Unions.”



  2. President sorry for 1999 massacre

    COLOMBIA: President Juan Manuel Santos has publicly apologised over a 1999 massacre in southern Colombia in which members of a government-backed right-wing death squad killed up to 50 civilians.

    Unveiling a new Reparations for Victims Act on Monday, Mr Santos said: “I want to take the opportunity to offer you my apologies as the president of the republic to all the victims. This massacre should have never happened.”

    On January 9 1999 members of the now defunct United Self-Defence Forces of Colombia descended on the village of El Tigre in Putumayo and raped, tortured and killed people deemed sympathetic to the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia.



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