Reference: Valerie Francisco, Vice Chair of Mass Campaigns, GABRIELA USA, firstname.lastname@example.org
Montréal, Québec, August 16, 2010 — Women of GABRIELA USA joined over 350 participants representing 32 different countries, including Pakistan, India, Kyrgyzstan, the Philippines, Mali, the Czech Republic, Germany, Cuba, Guatemala, Ecuador, and Mexico this past weekend to actively participate in the Montreal International Women’s Conference and the founding of the International Women’s Alliance.
GABRIELA USA was joined by local allies from all across the U.S. including members of VietUnity, Tadaima, Women’s Fightback Network in Boston and New York City, Million Workers March, Picture the Homeless, the International Action Center , Latin American Workers’ Project (NYC), Fight Imperialism Stand Together (FIST), Transit Workers’ Union, Cihuatl Tlatocan- Maiz, and the May 1st Coalition.
From August 13 to 15, delegates participated in plenaries, workshops, and discussions surrounding a wide variety of themes, including women workers, peasant women, indigenous struggles, developmental aggression, violence against women, racism, discrimination and genocide, as well as resistance to wars and imperialist aggression. From these workshops and plenaries, drafts of resolutions have been created to tackle these struggles on local and international levels.
During a plenary session, delegates unanimously endorsed a declaration in support of the 490 Tamils from Sri Lanka who arrived aboard the MV Sun Sea in Vancouver, Canada, decrying their ongoing detention while calling upon the Canadian government to accept them as refugees. In addition, participants also affirmed their solidarity and demanded the release of the 43 health workers who were illegally detained in the Philippines in February this past year.
On August 16, delegates of the conference formalized the assembly by creating the International Women’s Alliance which will build coordination of local, regional and international campaigns, to promote mutual support and the sharing of resistance strategies, and to mobilize women around the world in the struggle against imperialism, violence and capitalist globalization. The first assembly of the International Women’s Assembly will take place in July 2011 in the Philippines.
“As Filipina women, it is our duty as mothers, daughters, and sisters to come together and strengthen the movement against the exploitation and oppression of women rooted in the global imperialist system. We can no longer take the brunt of the economic crisis brought about by this system which causes so much hunger, unemployment, forced migration, and militarization all over the world. The time is now to bridge our struggles and strengthen the solidarity of women’s organizations worldwide. The formation of the International Women’s Alliance will help fortify the growing people’s movement against imperialism,” stated Raquel Redondiez, chairperson of GABRIELA USA.
GABRIELA USA is a national alliance of progressive Filipina women’s organizations including Samahan ng Kababaihan (San Francisco), babae (San Francisco), Pinay sa Seattle (Seattle), Filipinas for Rights and Empowerment (New York City), and Sisters of Gabriela Awaken (Los Angeles).
The initiative for the MIWC and IWA came out of a resolution of the women’s commission of the International League of People’s Struggle (ILPS) which met during the 3rd International Assembly of the ILPS in Hong Kong in 2008.
For more information about the conference and alliance, please visit https://miwc2010.wordpress.com/.