Meeting of the World Peace Council European member organizations November 12 - 13, 2021, Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal

Sunday, November 21, 2021

A meeting of the World Peace Council (WPC) European member organizations was successfully held on November 12th and 13th, in Vila Nova de Gaia, Portugal, hosted by the Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation (CPPC).

The meeting, which took place in a friendly way and in a fraternal atmosphere, debated on the international situation and the measures to be taken to strengthen solidarity with the peoples and the struggle for peace.

The WPC European member organizations participating in the meeting were: INTAL (Belgium); Cyprus Peace Council; Czech Movement for Peace; Movement for Peace (France); Alliance for Peace and Neutrality (Ireland); German Peace Council; Greek Committee for Détente and Peace; Council for the Defence of Solidarity and Peace (Spain); Peace Committee of Turkey; and the Portuguese Council for Peace and Cooperation, coordinator for the European Region of the WPC.

The WPC European member organizations meeting counted also with the participation of the WPC Executive secretary, the Brazilian Center for Solidarity with the Peoples and Struggle for Peace and of the Committee Against War Milan (Italy).

The meeting provided an important and useful change of information and views on the situation of the peace movement in each country and the activities being undertaken by the organizations in the struggle for peace and and in solidarity with the peoples.

The meeting analysed aspects of the European and international situation and the need to continue to develop common actions in defence of peace, as the situation in Europe and the World continues to be characterized by increasing instability and insecurity resulting from the aggressive escalation promoted by the United States of America (USA) and its allies – like NATO and the EU –, that promote the increase of military expenses and alliances and adopt actions, including military ones, against the peoples and States that affirm their sovereignty and rights, increasing its policy of confrontation against China and Russia, identified as its strategic adversaries.

This EU step up in militarization and of the creation of the European army that – not without rivalries – converges with the USA, assuming the EU militarization as the European pillar of NATO or complementary to this political-military bloc.

The WPC European member organizations gathered at the meeting expressed their solidarity with the peoples under imperialism’s aggression.

The WPC European member organizations have developed and participated, including within the framework of the WPC, in numerous and varied actions since the holding of their meetings held in London, May, 2018, and in Basel, September, 2019.

The WPC European member organizations reaffirmed their willingness to continue to step up their cooperation, namely promoting and participating in common and converging initiatives within the framework of the WPC. To this end, the WPC European member organizations decide to promote initiatives, namely within the following axes:

- the struggle against the European Union militarization, the denounce of the new EU-NATO joint declaration and of the so-called EU Strategic Compass, promoting a campaign under the motto "No to the militarization of the EU";

- the struggle against NATO, continuing the "Yes to Peace! No to NATO" campaign, denouncing in close collaboration with CEDESPAZ the NATO Summit that will take place on June 29 and 30, 2022, in Madrid, and promoting the «International Conference against imperialist aggression and its military instruments like NATO and foreign military bases»;

- solidarity with the peoples under interference and aggression, promoting days of action in solidarity with: the struggle of the Cypriot people for freedom, solution and reunification; with Cuba, demanding the end of US blockade; the people of Palestine against the Israeli occupation, namely celebrating the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, on November 29; the Bolivarian Venezuela and for the end of US blockade; the Western Sahara people and against the Moroccan occupation; among others;

- the struggle against militarism and war, for peace and disarmament, promoting actions for the abolition of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction and to continue the work in defence of the ratification of the Treaty banning nuclear weapons;

- against imperialist interference and aggression and in defence of the principles of the United Nations Charter and international law.

The WPC Executive Secretary reported on the preparations for holding the next World Peace Assembly, in 2022, in Vietnam.

The WPC member and friendly organizations were welcomed at the Vila Nova de Gaia City Council by the Councillor for culture who, on behalf of the Mayor, greeted the representatives of peace movements and expressed the municipality's commitment to defending peace.

After the end of the meeting, the participants had the opportunity to visit the Port wine cellars, which was followed by a convivial dinner.

The organizations present in the meeting expressed their support for the solidarity actions promoted by the Portuguese peace and solidarity movement with the Venezuela and Cuba peoples, respectively, held on November 11 and 15, in Portugal.

The WPC European member organizations that were present in the meeting issued the following statements:

About the NATO Summit to be held in Spain in 2022

The member organizations of the World Peace Council in Europe, during their meeting in Gaia, Portugal, on November 12 and 13, 2021, adopted the following motion:

The COVID 19 Pandemic has dismantled the fallacy that Humanity needs a Militarised Security System. Human Security today has to do with the need for drinking water, housing, food, vaccines, employment, education, curbing climate change and universal and free medical care.

It is not longer acceptable that global spending on weapons in 2019 was estimated at 1.63 trillion euros, 2.2% of world GDP (the highest figure since the cold war), compared to the 50.4 billion euros of annual average during the 1990s of official aid for development, while NATO applies the 2% of GDP of each member state for military spending.

According to the 2019 United Nations data, more than 820 million people suffer from hunger and 2,000 are threatened by it. 26.4% of the world population is not guaranteed a plate of food a day and 80 million people become refugees when fleeing wars.

The greatest effort to avoid the scourge of war on Humanity occurred at the end of World War II, when the allies faced with the German-Italian-Japanese Nazi-Fascist axis, committed themselves to a new international security system based on the United Nations Charter.

In its preamble, it promised to preserve the horror of wars for future generations and in its Chapter I, Article 2, it established: The members of the Organisation shall refrain in their international relations from resorting to the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any State, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.

The refusal to comply with this basic principle by the different US-Administrations, NATO and the EU, especially since their imperialist intervention in Yugoslavia in 1999, has triggered processes of destabilization, devastation and armed conflicts in different areas of the world that should never have occurred had the United Nations Charter been respected.

The cases of Iraq, Libya, Syria or Afghanistan reveal that the world security policy imposed by the US, NATO, the EU and their allies systematically violates the principles and mandates of the United Nations Charter.

The withdrawal of the United States from the Treaty on Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) and other relevant treaties again opens the possibility of an uncontrolled rearmament of tactical nuclear weapons, distancing the possibility of reaching an international agreement for the prohibition and ecological elimination of the entire world arsenal of weapons of mass destruction.

The failure of the imperialist forces in Afghanistan is the failure of that militarised security model, the failure of NATO. The new US president, Joe Biden, intends to re-promote NATO to turn it into a new instrument of confrontation with the People's Republic of China at the NATO-summit to be held in Spain in 2022.

Therefore, the member organisations of the World Peace Council in Europe agree to:

1 Reaffirm our commitment against NATO and the continuous deployment of US and NATO naval forces and military bases in many places of the world.

2 Denounce and reject the militarization of the EU which is acting together with NATO or alone with military missions in three continents.

3 To fight for, drastical reduction of global military spending, for the end of the research race for industrial weapons plans, like the Future Combat Air System, and the prohibition of use of all kind weapons of mass destruction.

4 Urge the peoples and the peace loving forces of the NATO member countries to develop their own campaigns that enable them to disengage from the military alliance.

5 Contribute, throughout the world, with all social, political, cultural organisations, with the scientific and academic world to initiate processes that culminate in the dissolution of NATO.

6 To continue the WPC campaign “Yes to Peace-No to NATO” initiated in 2010.

7 We appeal to all organizations and activists in Europe who defend the cause of Peace, to promote actions against NATO and its Madrid summit.

8 Participate in and support the events which will culminate with the anti-NATO Summit on June 29-30 2022 in Madrid with our Member Organisation in Spain and with a distinct presence of the WPC along with a WPC conference/seminar before or during the summit.

Meeting of the World Peace Council European member organizations

Vila Nova da Gaia/Portugal 13th November 2021


Actions of solidarity with Cypriot people

The Cyprus problem is currently going through the worst phase ever was, as the Cypriot people, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, are coming closer and closer to the final division of Cyprus. Turkey as the occupying power, is taking advantage of the inaction and the delusional erratic policy shown by President Anastasiades and his government, is constantly creating new fait accompli, either by opening the enclosed city of Famagusta or by proceeding with illegal drilling in the Cypriot EEZ.

At the same time, there is there is a militarization increasing and involvement of Cyprus in dangerous imperialist plans. On the one hand, Turkey, taking advantage of the occupied territories, is setting up military bases in order to secure its interests in the wider Mediterranean region. On the other hand, the Anastasiades government is constantly proceeding with a series of dangerous military agreements with other countries and organizations. Finally, the presence of British bases continues to serve NATO's plans in the region, as they function as a base of war in neighbouring countries.

For the Cyprus Peace Council (CPC), the commitment to the struggle for freedom, solution and reunification of our homeland and our people on the basis of the Bi-Communal Bi-Zonal Federation and the decisions and resolutions of the UN, is the only option that will free us from occupation.

Taking into account the above, the meeting of the European members of WPC decides to promote the following actions of solidarity with the Cypriot people:

1 Event on the Cyprus problem - film screening

In the context of the event, a message of the CPC will be displayed on the developments on the Cyprus issue, but also on the struggle of the Cypriot people for freedom, solution and reunification.

2 Posting a photo with a solidarity message on Social Media

Each organization will be able to post a photo in the language of its country with a solidarity message on the struggle of the Cypriot people, e.g. "We support the struggle of the Cypriot people for freedom, solution and reunification."

All the materials will be prepared and sent to the organizations by the Cyprus Peace Council.

Meeting of the World Peace Council European member organizations

Vila Nova da Gaia/Portugal 13th November 2021


Solidarity with the Greek Committee for International Détente and Peace (EEDYE) and with the Greek popular movement against the renewal and expansion of the Mutual Cooperation Defence Agreement (MCDA) between Greece and the US, and Greece's involvement in imperialist plans of the US-NATO-EU as well

The European regional meeting of the WPC, held in Gaia, 12-13 November 2021, expresses its solidarity with the Greek Committee for International Détente and Peace (EEDYE) and with the Greek popular movement against the renewal and expansion of the Mutual Cooperation Defence Agreement (MCDA) between Greece and the US, and Greece's involvement in imperialist plans of the US-NATO-EU as well.

We denounce the current Greek government and all the previous ones that promoted the "Strategic Dialogue between Greece and the US" in a context of economical, political and military issues, with the crucial renewal and expansion of the MCDA.

Especially we denounced the renewal of the MDCA that was signed on October 14, for 5 years and then it is going to be automatically renewed indefinitely.

The MCDA includes the further upgrade of the Souda base in Crete and the establishment of new bases all over Greece, that play a key role in all imperialist plans and interventions all around the world and to encircle Russia as well for the interests of the US-NATO and the EU.

The MCDA is added in a series of other aggressive Agreements that Greek government has signed, in the increase of military spends in the favour of NATO, the participation of Greek military forces in imperialist missions abroad, turning Greece into an operational base for the US-NATO-EU interests and Greek people as target.

The European Regional Meetings of the WPC endorses and support the demands of the Greek Committee for International Détente and Peace (EEDYE) and the Greek popular movement as well in order to:

- Disengage Greece from the imperialist plans of US-NATO-EU.

- Be cancelled the MCDA between Greece and the US.

- Shut down Souda base and all the Euroatlantic bases and infrastructures in Greece – No to the establishment of new ones.

- To return all the Greek military forces that participate in imperialist missions abroad – No participation in new imperialist missions.

Meeting of the World Peace Council European member organizations

Vila Nova da Gaia/Portugal 13th November 2021


End the US blockade! Cuba will win!

The economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed on Cuba by the United States of America is criminal, illegal and inhuman.

Imposed for over 60 years and aggravated several times, the imperialist blockade seeks to directly affect the living conditions of the Cuban people and fundamental rights such as health, food or development.

Between April and December 2020 alone, the blockade caused damage to the Cuban economy of more than 3.5 billion dollars and, in the midst of the pandemic, made it difficult for the Cuban people to access medicines and medical equipment and forced Cuba to buy equipment and reagents for the production of its own vaccines against COVID-19 at prices much higher than those practised internationally.

The US blockade is being helped by its allies, namely the European Union which is provocatively interfering and exercising political pressure based on alleged accusations of violations of human rights and civil liberties, proving its cynicism and hypocrisy.

The blockade is a particularly cruel form of aggression that must be put to an end. It is this just demand that has been affirmed for three decades by the vast majority of countries in the world, in successive votes at the General Assembly of the United Nations: in the last one, this year, 184 countries voted in favour of lifting the blockade, when the US and Israel voted against and only three countries abstained.

The blockade is a tool that the US uses in its policy of imposing a “regime change” in Cuba, to defeat the Cuban Revolution. An illegal policy under International Law, which also involves a systematic interference and disinformation campaign, attempts to destabilise, to prevent the action of Cuban international medical brigades or to limit international solidarity with Cuba.

The WPC European member organizations call upon the peace loving people and their organisations in the continent to take determined action to uphold the Cuban people's sovereignty and right to choose its own path, and to once again show that Cuba and its people are not alone.

We denounce and condemn the orchestrated plans for 15th November to create chaos and confusion in Cuba!

Cuba, always solidary, needs our solidarity.

We will not fail to be there!

Meeting of the World Peace Council European member organizations

Vila Nova da Gaia/Portugal 13th November 2021