The Second Mediterranean Conference of the LEFT
Istanbul, February 20 – 22, 2015
To unify the people’s struggle for democracy, peace and social justice from the South to the North
The Mediterranean Conference of the Left held its second meeting in Istanbul in 20 to 22 February 2015, at a very turbulent time full of wars and confusion, but also of hopes thanks to the victory of our comrades of Syriza in Greece on the 25th of January and the victory of YGP and YPJ and the internationalist forces with them in Kobane.
The Istanbul Conference has been a great opportunity to meet, exchange and analyze in a useful and rich way the complex situation experienced by the countries of Mediterranean area. We live in a time of deep crisis of capitalism and of its neoliberal model. It is a crisis that deepens social inequalities and increases unemployment and insecurity for working classes, especially young people and women. The crisis has worsened living conditions of too many people, and wars and conflicts have created millions of refugees.
We could observe the ambition of positive change, going through the whole Mediterranean area, starting from Tunisia and Egypt demanding bread and democracy, that have inspired millions of men and women who took the streets asking for work, dignity and social justice, but have been hijacked by the counter- revolutionary forces of reaction.
On the other side of Mediterranean, the social movements that have arisen against the austerity policies of the EU have culminated in the victory of Syriza in Greece and the development of struggles in Spain, Italy, Portugal, Belgium. This situation raises the hope for a change in Europe as space of solidarity between peoples: Europe of the people instead of a Europe of banks and financial capitalism.
The role of the so-called Gulf States has become more and more clear in directly and indirectly implementing strategic plans in the Middle East, Northern and Western Africa, as well as Europe. Supporting the rise of this obscurantist and reactionary political Islam is one of means for the imperialism to justify our living in a era of professed clash of civilization and not of class struggle, nationally and internationally.
There is a great attack against people’s demands coming from an alliance between imperialism, the reactionary forces of the area, as Saudi Arabia and Qatar, and the political parties their allies, like Muslim brotherhood, that are now serving the geopolitical plans of imperialism and of capitalism and neoliberal system in the entire region. We believe that only a radical change of the dominant social and economic order can give an answer to the question of social justice that grows in the North and South of the Mediterranean.
The task of the left and of the forces of the labor movements in this moment is to reinforce an alternative to rebuild a hope for change for a society based on social justice and participation, democracy and peace, for equality and freedom, for socialism. The Kurdish example of resistance against ISIL and liberating Kobane promotes this kind of society against barbarism the conference meets with joy this alternative social system. It supports the self-determination and official recognition of the Rojava Canton system and decides to provide support to the reconstruction of Kobane. We urge the Turkish state to open a corridor to Kobane and allow the provision of support and aid.
For this purpose it’s necessary to unify and bundle the forces of the left in the South and the North.
The Conference expresses its concern about the deepening of civil war in Syria and the risk of an external military intervention, threatened by Turkey, USA and NATO. The conference, denouncing the unacceptable interference of the petro-monarchies and Turkey in fomenting the militarization of the conflict and the brutal repression of the regime, manifests its opposition to any interference of imperialism. We support a political solution elaborated by all sides that will guarantee the integrity of Syria and the right of Syrian people to decide democratically about their future.
The conference proclaims its support to the struggles for the recognition of civil and human rights throughout the entire region, to the struggle to end the occupation that still exists around the Mediterranean and the right of self-determination of peoples. For this reason, the conference demonstrates its support to the cause of the Palestinian people in their struggle against the occupation, for their right of self-determination and to have their own state with East Jerusalem as capital and return of refugees to their homes. Condemn the policies of apartheid and of colonization through settlements, as well as the blockade of Gaza carried out by Israeli occupation, supported by the US and the EU. We oppose the construction of the wall and forced expulsion of the Palestinians from Jerusalem and all the West Bank, at the same time we welcome and support the popular resistance movement against it. We ask the recognition of Palestinian state in all the international institutions as demanded by the Palestinian authority, and the membership of Palestine to the ICJ. We ask to stop and to dismantle settlements building and for the recognition of the right of return
for the Palestinian refugees. We ask for the acceleration of the rebuilding of Gaza after the 2014 war and to negotiate a political settlement to avoid future wars. We require the release of all Palestinian political prisoners.
The conference expresses its support for the solution of the Western Sahara issue through the referendum for the self-determination of Saharawi people, in accordance with the resolutions of the UN, and calls for the respect of human rights and the liberation of Saharawi political prisoners.
The conference calls for an end of the repression of the Kurdish people in supporting their struggle for rights in all countries. We support a political and negotiated solution between Turkey and the Kurdish that means the Freedom for Kurdish political prisoners and for Abdullah Ocalan, as well as other political prisoners. We condemn the execution of 5 revolutionaries the past week (19.02) and we demand the removal of PKK from EU terror list.
It has been a century since the Armenian Genocide, we still condemn this first genocide of modern times.
In Turkey, we demand the end of the persecution of DBP and HDP, its activists and leaders. We want new oppressive laws called “internal security laws” being withdrawn because causing violation of human and civil rights. We reaffirm the freedom of expression and to stop the detention of ÖDP members imprisoned because of their opposition to the government. We want immediate precautions in the legal system and practice for preventing violence and murder against women.
We witness an explosive situation in and around Cyprus due to the Turkish occupation and Turkish violation of the international law concerning the gas and oil sources discovered in the Eastern Mediterranean sea. We strongly support the reunification and demilitarization of the island, the peaceful coexistence of all Cypriots in a federal state. We demand negotiations in order to solve this problem and prevent escalation into wars. As a precondition for the negotiations, end of provocations as the violation of the sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus by the Turkish ship Barbaros.
We want a Mediterranean free of nuclear weapons and free from the military bases of NATO and all the foreign military bases. We call for a nuclear weapon-free zone in Middle-East. Israeli state must sign the non proliferation treaty (TNP) and entering the international disarmament process. The nuclear powers must stop research and development in nuke and miniaturization. We denounce the EU policy of militarization and externalization of borders, as well as the influence of NATO as seen in the case of Ukraine.
We want a Mediterranean that defends the environment and the common goods like water and all public services. We denounce the responsibility of European companies in the deterioration of people’s living condition in the South Mediterranean countries. We support democratic and popular control of the natural resources and public services. We refuse the capitalist thinking in terms of “growth” that sacrifices both workers and natural resources. Our model of development must take into account the limits of ecosystems and combine both ecology and socialism.
We fight against racism and xenophobia and reactionary forces, for the civil and human rights of all migrants, for secularism extended to international relationship and diplomacy and against racial, religious or gender discrimination.
The second conference of the Left of the Mediterranean is a step forward in our cooperation. We will strengthen the cooperation between our parties, youth organizations and women, between the trade unions and social activists, artists, intellectuals, etc.
We set up a coordination team in 2012 and it will continue its work to prepare the third round of the conference in a country in the south of the Mediterranean. This coordination allows to continue on this path and to encourage the participation and inclusion. We propose that the coordination team meets next March in Tunisia on the occasion of the World Social Forum.
We want to build another Mediterranean: Peace, solidarity, citizenship and social justice.
Together we can do it. Together we will do it.
Long live international solidarity