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Lisbon Meeting 10-12 November 2006: Press Release

1. An International Meeting of Communist and Workers´ Parties took place, in Lisbon, on November 10, 11 and 12, 2006, under the theme «Dangers and potentialities of the international situation. The strategy of imperialism and the energy issue, the struggle of peoples and the Latin America experience, the prospect of socialism.»

The Meeting, with the participation of 63 parties and to which 17 parties that could not attend the meeting, for various reasons, sent messages of greetings, highlighted the most relevant aspects of the international situation. Besides expressing a vehement warning concerning the great threats of our time, it expressed confidence in the capacity of peoples to force imperialism to retreat in its hegemonic designs and achieve new advances, on the path of social progress, peace and socialism.

2. The Meeting noted the increasing acuteness of the class struggle and underlined the need to intensify the struggle against neo-liberalism and neo-colonialism and against the offensive of exploitation by big capital, which – in attacking the most elementary human values - is responsible for the social, cultural and democratic regression.

3. It was stressed that neo-liberalism, militarism, war and the attack against fundamental rights, liberties and guarantees are inseparable components of the offensive by big capital and imperialism.

The struggle for the domination of the planet�s energy resources and the control of their distribution routes is an important factor in the geo-politics of imperialism, both in terms of collaborations and in terms of rivalries, as is obvious in Europe, the Middle East, Central Asia, Africa and in other regions

At the same time, the participants denounced the wastage of energy resources by the unbridled consumption that characterizes capitalist societies.

4. It was considered that there is a need to intensify the struggle against militarism and war; for the withdrawal of the forces of occupation from Afghanistan and Iraq; to dissolve NATO and other aggressive military treaties; to drastically reduce armament expenditures and channel them to promoting development; to abolish foreign military bases. The urgency of placing the issue of disarmament, and in particular nuclear disarmament, once again on the agenda was underlined. 5. The generalization of attacks against fundamental rights, liberties and guarantees of citizens was highlighted as a particularly disturbing trend in the international situation. The adoption by the US Congress of practices of torture and State terrorism was condemned.

The participants present at the Meeting launched a vehement appeal for the struggle in defence of democratic freedoms, against the advance of the extreme right, against xenophobia, racism, religious fanaticism and obscurantism, against anticommunism. They expressed their solidarity with the young Czech communists, demanding the re-establishment of the rights of the Czech Communist Youth. They rejected attempts to criminalize forces and peoples that resist the capitalist exploitation and imperialist oppression.

6. The participants valued the growing resistance against imperialist interference and aggression and underlined the importance of strengthening solidarity with all peoples who are in the front ranks of that struggle.

They underlined the significance of the strong resistance that the US and NATO occupation forces are facing in Afghanistan and Iraq. Threats against Syria and against Iran, which in the past few days have become particularly serious, were condemned. Total respect for the sovereignty of Lebanon was demanded. They denounced the crimes perpetrated by Israel in Lebanon and in Palestine, and the complicity of the European Union with the USA, which is responsible for the situation of repression and humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza and the West Bank. They expressed their support for the struggle for Israel�s complete withdrawal from all Arab territories occupied in 1967, in abidance with the relevant UN resolutions, as well as their active solidarity with the PLO and the Palestinian people in their struggle for the establishment of their own independent and sovereign State on territory of Palestine.

7. The concrete experiences of struggle in different countries and regions were generally present in the statements, confirming that the workers and peoples do not conform and that, even in the present conditions, liberating advances towards sovereignty and social progress are possible.

The advances of the popular and anti-imperialist struggles that are sweeping through Latin America and the processes of sovereignty and cooperation in solidarity that are taking place there, were greeted. Solidarity was expressed with socialist Cuba – reaffirming the demand for an end to the criminal blockade imposed by the US – with the people of Venezuela and their Bolivarian revolution, with the people of Bolivia and with other peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean.

8. The relevance and urgency of socialism was generally underlined. The exchange of opinions demonstrated the incapacity of capitalism to provide solutions for the urgent problems confronting the workers and peoples, and the threats to which capitalism exposes the future of the planet. Socialism increasingly emerges as an alternative to capitalism and as a condition for the survival of Humanity itself.

9. It was underlined that the present international situation makes it particularly necessary to strengthen the cooperation of all progressive and anti-imperialist forces and, in particular, that of Communist and workers´ parties from all over the world. In this sense, the convening of this type of Meetings was valued, as an arena for the exchange of information, of experiences, of points of view and for the possible definition of common positions and initiatives. The importance of ensuring their continuity was considered. Various topics, lines of action and initiatives for the development of the solidarity and joint action of the Communist and Workers� Parties, as well as of other progressive and revolutionary forces were proposed, namely:
  • Against militarism and war and in particular for the withdrawal of the forces of occupation from Iraq;
  • For the dissolution of NATO and the abolition of foreign military bases;
  • Against the imperialist strategy in the Middle East and for actions of urgent solidarity with the Palestinian people and to send missions of solidarity to Palestine and Lebanon;
  • Of solidarity with Bolivarian Venezuela and Bolivia and with Socialist Cuba, with the promotion of a week of joint actions of solidarity with this country;
  • Against historical revisionism, the whitewashing of fascism, and anti-communism, marking significant dates such as September 11, 1973, in Chile;
  • Against the neo-liberal offensive to dismantle workers� rights and achievements, working to strengthen the mass action and the class-based trade union movement and in defence of migrant workers;
  • To take advantage of participation in international events to hold meetings and coordinate the activity of Communists;
  • To stimulate cooperation on a regional basis and on specific issues, between the Parties.

The importance of the battle of ideas in our times was highlighted. The participants stressed the importance of marking the 90th anniversary of the October Revolution with various initiatives and expressed their support for the project of an international event to be held in the Russian Federation.

The PCP informed of its intention to promote an international event, on a European level, in connection with the Portuguese presidency of the European Union, which will take place in the second semester of 2007.

10. The date, venue and theme for the 2007 International Meeting will be decided by the meeting of the Working Group of Communist and Workers Parties, that will take place in due time, and will be announced in a Press Release.

11. The Meeting adopted an «Appeal against militarism and war, for freedom, democracy, peace and social progress» and a «Motion of solidarity with Latin America and Cuba».

12. This Meeting was attended by the Parties included in the list that is annexed to this Press Release.

Lisbon, November 12, 2006

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