NEPAL: Socialists reaffirm fight against globalisation

November 29, 2000



KATHMANDU — The Socialism 21 Conference here finished on a high note as representatives from 17 countries linked arms and led a spirited 10,000-strong rally against price hikes on November 9. The rally was organised by four left parties, the major one being the Communist Party of Nepal-United Marxist Leninist (CPN-UML), which also coordinated the Socialism 21 Conference. Later, demonstrators lit kerosene torches in defiance of local laws and were tear gassed by police.

Socialism 21 concluded with a call for the 21st century to be the century of socialism, justice, freedom and peace. The high-profile conference was a great success and could not have been ignored by anyone in Kathmandu. The city was festooned with flags and banners to welcome the international guests. Hotels and convention centres had been donated to facilitate the conference and the CPN-UML mobilised many of their cadres to ensure there were no hitches.

Delegates were given a good insight into the workings of the CPN-UML, its history and culture. The party became a united party in 1990 and now has 71 members of parliament. It still mobilises its members for mass meetings and demonstrations.

According to CPN-UML leader and coordinator of the conference, Pradip Nepal, the meeting of socialists from around the world expressed the view that socialists must lead, support and participate in peoples' movements for civil liberties and against discrimination on the basis of gender, race or class. It reaffirmed the need for socialists to intensify resistance against imperialist economic globalisation and continue to lead and support national liberation movements and democracy throughout the world.

Pradip Nepal said globalisation had become the main challenge and threat to the socialist movement and the sovereignty of small nations.

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