Via Campesina is a global organisation of peasants and one of the largest and most significant international social movements. The statement below in solidarity with Venezuela’s revolution and peasants was released by its International Coordinating Commission of Via Campesina International, which met in Managua, Nicaragua on March 29.
We, Via Campesina Internacional, the international peasant movement that brings together over 200 million families in 77 countries, express our solidarity with the Venezuelan people, their peasant movement and the Bolivarian revolution.
The revolution is the victim of an imperialist crusade that, together with reactionary right-wing forces, conspires within Venezuela and abroad in a bid to retake the power they lost legitimately, democratically, and repeatedly at the ballot box.
Those of us who struggle for social justice, land reform, and food sovereignty consider the Bolivarian revolution a reference for social transformation and inclusion. As women, youth, rural workers, fisherfolk, indigenous peoples, and migrants, we reject all media-backed attempts at coup d etats.
They seek to place into the collective imagination the image of demonstrators frustrated with the consequences of an economic war being imposed on Venezuela by powerful oligarchical, fascist, and imperialist sectors — all aimed at destabilising the government of President Nicolas Maduro.
Since the death in March last year of president Hugo Chavez, leader of the Latin American integration process, the North American empire and its regional allies have underestimated the courageous Venezuelan people.
The imperialists wrongly think that by using physical, economic and media violence they can turn back the clock and once again dominate a region that now has important spaces of integration. These include the Bolivarian Alliance for the People’s of Our America (ALBA), the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) and the Community of Caribbean and Latin American States (CELAC).
It is no coincidence that the attempted destabilisation began only a few days after the successful conclusion of the CELAC summit in Havana, and one year before the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela takes on the presidency of the Movement of Non-Aligned Countries. It is in this context that the Via Campesina International, with hundreds of thousands of women and men organised in the Latin American Coordination of Rural Organizations (CLOC), insist we will keep mobilising in defence of the processes of transformation and struggle that Latin American peoples are building.
We are conscious of the fact that powerful transnational interests are looking to reverse the advances achieved by the Bolivarian revolution and its peasant movement. These include an agrarian reform that democratised land access for thousands of peasant and indigenous families, has increased national food production, allowed cultural recuperation and promoted traditional agroecological practices, gained access to credit, marketing for peasants, among others gains.
We reaffirm our commitment to the Ezequiel Zamora National Peasant Front (FNCEZ) and the Ezequiel Zamora National Agrarian Coordination (CANEZ), member groups of the Via Campesina International in the sister republic of Venezuela. These groups’ struggle for land, food production by and for the Venezuelan people, and the consolidation of peoples’ power in the countryside is also our struggle.
Finally, we express our unconditional commitment to, and solidarity with, the peoples’ cause and the Bolivarian revolution. We are sure the efforts of the corporate-owned media — to manipulate public opinion and minimise the advances of the organised people of Venezuela — will not succeed. We will continue, united and on our feet, in struggle with our sister people and her struggle to defend her social achievements.