Whither Canadian Diplomacy – Enabling Mining Companies or Land and Environment Defenders?
November 10, 2015
Colombian labour and Indigenous leaders will discuss the peace process in Colombia and share their stories of resistance to multinational corporate plunder.
In 2007, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced Canada’s new “Americas Policy,” through which Canada would build trade ties with governments that shared Canada’s values of “democracy, human rights, rule-of-law and good governance.” The Canadian government then announced negotiations for a free trade and investment deal with Colombia, the country with the worst human rights record in the hemisphere. The Canada-Colombia Free Trade Agreement (CCOFTA), implemented in 2011, resolved to “protect, enhance and enforce basic workers’ rights,” and affirmed a commitment to the “protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms.” Instead, like Canada’s previous trade deals it proved to be a standard neoliberal agreement that promotes market liberalization, privatization and deregulation.
When: Thur. Nov. 19th
Where: Friends House 60 Lowther, Toronto (wheelchair accessible )
Time: 6:30 PM
- Colombian labour lawyer and activist, Francisco Ramirez Cuellar , will speak on issues of corporate crimes against humanity, the grim reality of being a union organizer in Colombia, and what a peace with justice might look like for Colombia’s victims.
- Felipe Uncacia speaks from the perspective of Indigenous rights and land protection in the context of the Colombian armed conflict.
- Professor Yasmin Hristov speaks on issues of paramilitarism and neo-paramilitarism in Colombia’s current… political landscape.