***image2***Some 155,000 activists from around the world participated in the fifth annual World Social Forum, held in Porto Alegre, where Palestine had its role within the largest gathering thus far of the global social movements.
An always crowded Palestine tent was a focal point at the Forum, while various information stands disseminated material to the participants. A demonstration for a Free Palestine, ending with the symbolic destruction of a 10-meter long mock Wall, drew large numbers of supporters for the Palestinian cause.
The Palestinian Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign, as part of the Palestinian delegation âUnited in Struggleâ (OPGAI), organized several events and brought forward a unified statement and call to action at the WSF (see below). Self-organized events organized by the delegation included two workshops on the history of Palestine and the current reality and the two seminars: âConfronting Zionism: Bringing Together Global Movements against Racism and Globalizationâ and âThe Call from Palestine for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctionsâ. Numerous other seminars were organized by the Palestinian community in Brazil as well as international organizations.
The call from Palestine for a comprehensive strategy to isolate Israeli Apartheid until it respects Palestinian rights, International Law and the UN resolutions including the Right of Return was core to many of the initiatives, and as well dominated the three days of strategy meetings on Palestine. The final statement on Palestine that makes up part of the Anti-War Movements Assembly declaration is an expression of this (see below) and is in line with most of the declarations that have come out of international conferences held since the meeting of the global anti-war and anti-globalization movements in Beirut (17-19, September 2004) highlighting the worldwide understanding that as long as the reality for the Palestinian people is not changing and Israeli Occupation and Apartheid is not brought to an end, only concrete international pressure on Israel can give the Palestinian struggle the support it needs.
It is as well becoming more and more evident that this global consensus needs to be translated in concrete strategies and action plans. The meeting of the Movement against Israeli Apartheid held at the concluding day of the WSF has thus delineated an initial outline for a global campaign to isolate Israel. (For further information, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org