Category Archives: AFA News

AsiaDHRRA appeals for the release of Anti-WTO Protesters

Mr. Donald Tsang
Chief Executive
Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong
People’s Republic of China

Dear Mr Tsang ,

Happy New Year!

We, leaders and members of the Asian Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Asia ( AsiaDHRRA), a network of twelve non-government organizations in eleven countries in Asia, and an accredited NGO in UN, ASEAN and WTO MC6, call for the immediate release of protestors from South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and mainland China, who are facing charges of unlawful assembly for the events that transpired on the December 17, 2005 near the vicinity of the 6th World Trade Organization’s Ministerial Conference site in Hong Kong.

Many international groups, including ourselves, went to Hongkong to articulate our issues against unfair trade rules and anti-development policies of WTO. We believe the14 protestors, many of them farmers, were attempting to voice their frustration and desperation at yet another round of the WTO Ministerial conference that was seen to yield no measures to alleviate poverty or to address their concerns.

We also urge the Hongkong government to conduct an impartial and thorough inquiry into the human rights violations and the violence used on the part of the Hong Kong police. It has come to our knowledge that various human rights organizations have documented numerous instances of human rights violations by the Hongkong police during the process of detaining over 1300
anti- WTO protestors.

We appeal to your government’s compassion , tolerance for democratic expression and adherence to human rights standards. We call on you to release all the 14 detainees unconditionally, to drop all charges against them and re-unite them with their families and communities.

Thank you for your attention on this matter.

Respectfully yours,

Ms. Marlene D. Ramirez
Secretary General
AsiaDHRRA

Remembering the Tsunami Victims

As the whole world remember last year’s tsunami tragedy, let us pause for some moments of silence… and be one in mind and spirit with the survivors, especially men and women farmers and fishers, from Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand. We pause to remember lost lives and injured bodies and spirits. We pause to share feelings of grief and loss. We pause to share the hope, the courage and the determination of the survivors to overcome the tragedy and to move on. We pause to pray for continued, speedy and effective efforts to rebuild and rehabilitate,in an appropriate and sustainable manner, and through the optimum use of available resources and expertise.

Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA)
December 26, 2005

Downloads: Food Sovereignty Forum presentations

Our apologies for the delay in uploading these conference materials. we got caught up in the xmas holiday here in the philippines so soon after we came back. We weren’t able to update this blog while in HK (much to our chagrin) because we actually had a hard time finding an easily accessible internet cafe.

The wifi hotspots we were expecting HK to be covered with turned out to be false hope as every single one we found was encrypted and private. Which made Jet miss South Korea the most -with its hotspots galore. Maybe internet is still a new thing in HK or just that HKs are just stingy with their wifi :-)

Anyways, we have archived the presentations and case writeups in zip format so you may need winzip to open them (if WinXp explorer doesnt work for you). Also included are the audio files of the Korean protest songs (mp3 format). We are still currently culling the pictures (we took about 2 gigs worth of pics —hehehe, the perils of having a digital camera), and they are now available for download via flickr.

Forum Presentations: download here
Korean Protest Songs:
Farmers’ Song, Track 2, Track 3, Track 4, Download all songs

AFA appeals for release of anti-WTO detainees

Mr. Donald Tsang
Chief Executive
Hongkong, China

Dear Mr Tsang ,

Warm greetings of Peace and Goodwill!

We, Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA), an alliance of national small farmers’ organizations from ten countries in Southeast and North Asia, is deeply concerned about the continuous detention of 14 anti-WTO demonstrators, following the rally last December 17, 2005.

Together with many international groups, including the groups of Korean farmers and trade union leaders, we went to Hongkong to voice out our protest against unfair agricultural global agricultural trade rules and push WTO members to protect farmers rights and livelihoods in the current DOHA round negotiations.

We are aware that under the WTO rules, our farming livelihoods are being threatened. There is drastic reduction in our incomes; as well as government support to our sector. Together with farmers from all over the world, we called for a stop to WTO’s continuous neglect to our concerns. We were deeply moved by the sincere actions of our fellow Korean farmers. We deeply admired their determination and courage in fighting for their rights and lives.

We lament the fact that many people were injured, including some Hongkong policemen, during the Dec. 17 anti-WTO rally.

However, we sincerely hope that that your government will broaden its understanding of protest actions.

In the name of democracy and freedom of speech and expression, we call on you to release all the 14 detainees unconditionally and to drop all charges. We sincerely hope that your government will really maintain its maximum tolerance policy and will protect the human rights of those in custody.

Respectfully yours,

Ma. Estrella A. Penunia
Secretary General
Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA)
www.asianfarmers.org

Appeal to Release Anti WTO Protesters

 Mr. Ambrose S. K. Lee
Head of Security Bureau Hongkong, China

Dear Mr Lee, Warm greetings of Peace and Goodwill!

We, Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA), an alliance of national small farmers’ organizations from ten countries in Southeast and North Asia, is deeply concerned about the continuous detention of 14 anti-WTO demonstrators, following the rally last December 17, 2005.

Together with many international groups, including the groups of Korean farmers and trade union leaders, we went to Hongkong to voice out our protest against unfair agricultural global agricultural trade rules and push WTO members to protect farmers rights and livelihoods in the current DOHA round negotiations.

We are aware that under the WTO rules, our farming livelihoods are being threatened. There is drastic reduction in our incomes; as well as government support to our sector. Together with farmers from all over the world, we called for a stop to WTO’s continuous neglect to our concerns.

We were deeply moved by the sincere actions of our fellow Korean farmers. We deeply admired their determination and courage in fighting for their rights and lives.

We lament the fact that many people were injured, including some Hongkong policemen, during the Dec. 17 anti-WTO rally. However, we sincerely hope that that your government will broaden its understanding of protest actions. In the name of democracy and freedom of speech and expression, we call on you to release all the 14 detainees unconditionally and to drop all charges.

We sincerely hope that your government will really maintain its maximum tolerance policy and will protect the human rights of those in custody.

Respectfully yours,

Ma. Estrella A. Penunia
Secretary General
Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA)
www.asianfarmers.org

AFA, APHD, AsiaDHRRA Schedule of Activities and Participation in WTO MC 6

Download the Detailed Program of Activities

Sunday, December 11

1300-1700 hrs:
March/Rally at Victoria Park, led by HKPA

Monday, December 12

0800-2100 hrs:
Arrival/Registration

1800-2000 hrs:
Getting of WTO Badges (for WTO accredited participants)

Tuesday, December 13

0900-1100 hrs:
Orientation at BP Intl House Rm 1107, organized by AFA,APHD, AsiaDHRRA

1100-1200 hrs:
Banner Weaving at BP Intl House Rm 1107, organized by AFA.

1300-1800 hrs:
Opening Rally at Victoria Park, organized by HKPA

1800-1900 hrs:
Outside Briefing at Boys and Girls Club, organized by OWINFS

Wednesday, December 14

900-1700 hrs:
Forum: WTO, Food Sovereignty, and Alternatives to Globalization at Boys & Girls Club Auditorium, organized by APNFS, AFA, AsiaDHRRA, ISGN.

1800-1900 hrs:
Outside Briefing at Boys and Girls Club, organized by OWINFS

Thursday, December 15

0900-1300 hrs:
Forum: WTO, Food Sovereignty, and Alternatives to Globalization at Boys & Girls Club Auditorium, organized by APNFS, AFA, AsiaDHRRA, and ISGN

1400-1700 hrs:
Reflection Session at Boys and Girls Club Rm 501, by AFA, AsiaDHRRA, APHD

1800-1900 hrs:
Outside Briefing at Boys and Girls Club, organized by OWINFS

Friday, December 16

0900-1200 hrs:
Reflection Session among AsiaDHRRA participants

1300-1700 hrs:
Street Campaign organized by KAFF

1800-1900:
Outside Briefing at Boys and Girls Club, organized by OWINFS

Saturday, December 17

0900-1200 hrs:
AFA ExeCom Meeting at Boys and Girls Club Rm 602

1430-1630 hrs:
Peasants’ Rally at Victoria Park, organized by La Via Campecina

1800-1900 hrs:
Outside Briefing at Boys and Girls Club, organized by OWINFS

1900-2200 hrs:
Joint Concert at Victoria Park, organized by various groups

Sunday, December 18

Closing Rally at Victoria Park, organized by HKPA ( time to be announced)
Korea Rally at Victoria Park, organized by KAFF

1700-2200 hrs:
Concert at Victoria Park, organized by many groups

Monday, December 19
Departure of participants

WTO KILLS!
UNITE! FIGHT FOR FARMERS’ RIGHTS AND LIVES!

FNN (Cambodia) to convene 3rd General Assembly

FNN will hold its 3rd General Assembly on 3-4 December 2005 in Prey veng Province, Cambodia

The objectives of this event are:

1. To share experienses and progress of farmer association
2. To spread the FNN statute among the member and observers
3. To discuss and approve internal regulations; activities, plan and budget of FNN for 2006

Below are pictures from the 2nd General Assembly held last year in Kompong Chan Province

FNN 2004 General Assembly01 FNN 2004 General Assembly02

FNN 2004 General Assembly03 FNN 2004 General Assembly04

Election of Officers and the elected Officers of FNN for 2004

KAFF farmer commits suicide on eve of APEC forum

Damyang, Nov 12, 2005 (BBC Monitoring via COMTEX) —

A South Korean farmer-activist opposed to his government’s plans for greater liberalization of the nation’s rice market appears to have committed suicide on Friday [11 November], the eve of the opening of the annual APEC [Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation] forum on trade liberalization in Pusan, police said Saturday.

The body of Chung Yong-pum, a 38-year-old farmer in Damyang of South Cholla Province, about 350 kilometres south of Seoul, was found at his local town hall Saturday morning. Police said they found an empty bottle of herbicide near Chung’s body, along with what appears to be a suicide note. “I wish this country will become a society where hard working people are respected,” the note reads, according to the officials who spoke on condition of anonymity. “The government must come up with realistic policies for the rice market and the farming industry to allow farmers to live comfortably.”

Continue reading KAFF farmer commits suicide on eve of APEC forum

Books from ERA Consumer Malaysia

era consumer malaysiaA list of books on Sustainable Agriculture, Food Security and Rural Development published by AFa partner ERA Consumer Malaysia

    1. Building Capacities and Strengthening Community Action for Sustainable Development
    2. Changing Consumption Patterns in Malaysia : A Cause For Concern
    3. Food Security Village Assessment – Micro Study of 24 Villages in Malaysia – 2001
    4. Report on AOA Research and It’s Impact on Women in Malaysia – 2001
    5. Workshop on Agreement on Agriculture (AOA) in Malaysia – 2000
    6. National Agriculture Workshop – For A Successful Food Production Sector in Malaysia – 2000
    7. Proceedings of the Conference on People’s Response to Food Security in South East Asia – 1999
    8. National Consultation on Food Security in Malaysia – 1998

Dowload these publications here…

Latest Book from AFA: Possibilities of Working Together for Fairer Agricultural Trade: A Civil Society – Government Dialogue

afa bookThe sixth Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization is scheduled in December 2005, in Hongkong. Agriculture, through the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) undertaking, is still top of the agenda. With Asian farmers bearing the brunt of lopsided global agricultural trade policies, this sector should be well-informed about developments on this issue and should be involved in the discussions at both the national and international levels. The continuing alliance of developing nations forged during the WTO Ministerial Meeting in Cancun, Mexico, such as the G20 and G33, have to be encouraged, and this encouragement can come from civil society groups who have positive engagement with their own governmental negotiators.

The Asian Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Areas (AsiaDHRRA) and the Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA), jointly organized this dialogue as part of their efforts to increase the awareness of their leaders about the developments in the current WTO round of talks as well as to engage like-minded trade negotiators and civil society leaders at the regional level on how best to approach trade talks such that small farmers in their countries can be better protected and be able to reap more benefits from global trade.

Participants to this dialogue, entitled, “Civil Society-Government Dialogue: Possibilities of Working Together” came from participants to two activities dovetailed with each other. The first was “Second Asian Leaders’ Dialogue (ALD)”, attended by leaders of various non-government organizations in Asia. The second activity was “Thailand Farmers’ Exchange Visit (FEV):Farmers’ Sustainable Initiatives and Advocacy in Response to Globalization Challenges,” attended by farmer leaders and their translators. This dialogue was the first part of these two activities. The ALD activity ran until March 5 and the FEV until March 8. The dialogue was a joint activity of both AsiaDHRRA and AFA.

We were encouraged by the results of this dialogue. Building on this, we are conducting follow-up dialogues both at the country and regional levels, from September to November 2005. AFA and AsiaDHRRA members are jointly cooperating in a WTO 2005 campaign which seeks to increase awareness of more farmer members on WTO issues and their capabilities to engage their governments on international issues that affect their lives.

Download the book in PDF format (1.5 MB)

A Meaningful Meeting of Partners

korean rally
The 12th AFA Execom meeting held in Seoul, Korea on Sept. 9-15, 2005 was a very productive event for AFA as they were able to strengthen relations with Korean farmers, clarify organizational issues and enhance the regional projection of AFA as a farmers’ organization.

AFA in Korea 2005 120The activities included participation in the Second Commemoration of the Martyrdom of Lee Kyung Hae, Field visits to Korean Farmers, visits and dialogue with KAFF, review of AFA proposals and projects and drafting of plans for the Hongkong Ministerial and AFA general Assembly.

AFA participated in the commemoration activities by joining the rally of Korean Farmers in Youido where AFA Chairperson Heru Wardoyo presented a Solidarity Message. AFA was also invited in the ceremony at the Martyrium in LHK’s hometown in Jeollabuk-do, Korea

IMG_8317The visits to Korean farms was an eye-opener on the effects of WTO to small farmers when economic and agricultural policies ran counter to the needs of the farmers and sustainable agriculture

Lee Jin Hyeong, a pear fruit farmer and a leisure farm operator is suffering heavy losses due to influx of cheap fruit imports.

After near collapse of his organic farm because of the Korean IMF liberalization package, Han Kyung Hee is now trying to rebuild it by farming and selling miniature organic vegetables.

The dialogue with KAFF also provided a clearer understanding of its goals and projects and further inspired the farmer leaders to emulate the successes of KAF in their home countries.

The Execom meeting clarified several organizational issues and drafted plans for the upcoming Hongkong Ministereal and the AFA General Assembly

Upcoming AFA Activities

AFA Execom
Execom Meeting and Commemoration of Death Anniversary of Patriot Lee Kyung Hae
Sept. 9-15, 2005, Seoul Korea

Philippines
August 12 – Deepening of Understanding of WTO Issues with Pakisama National Council
August 22 – Civil society consultation on WTO, PhilDHRRA Partnership Center
Sept 16 – Dialogue with Philippine government agricultural trade negotiators

Thailand
August 29 – WTO consultation at Sor Kor Por office

Cambodia
Sept 2 – Civil Society Consultation and Dialogue with Government (venue to be announced)

South Korea
Sept 10-11 Commemoration of Death Anniversary of Patriot Lee Kyung Hae

Regional level
October 3-5 ASEAN-Civil Society Forum, Bangkok, Thailand (venue and program to be announced)
October 6-8 Dialogue with Asian government negotiators (venue and program to be announced)

AFA and AsiaDHRRA WTO 2005 Campaign

AFA and AsiaDHRRA WTO 2005 Campaign Towards Responsive MDGs and Fairer Agricultural Trade

CONTEXT

The next WTO Ministerial Conference (MC) will be held in Hongkong this December 2005. This is the first time that a WTO MC will be held in Asia. Agriculture trade liberalization and its full modalities are one of the top agenda. Clearly, this event can be maximized so as to make our – the small farmers and rural development workers – voices heard, to advocate/influence and advance our causes.

Already, civil society advocacy groups are gearing up to influence the outcome of the WTO MC, according to their own frameworks and positions. The Hongkong People’s Alliance Against WTO (HKPAAWTO) is just one of the groups coordinating hundreds of civil society groups bent to make actions before and during the Ministerial Conference.

For both AsiaDHRRA and AFA, we hope to see fairer and more just global trade rules that benefit the small farmers, fishers and rural women in developing countries. We would like our governments to push for the elimination of trade- distorting subsidies by developed countries, and decide not to privatize basic services such as water. Instead, we like our governments to mainstream sustainable agriculture, including agrarian reform, both in their policies and programs. But we know that to be able to influence the governments strongly, we must have credible, capable, well-informed farmers groups and NGO leaders able to articulate issues and demands.

Realizing this, we , in AsiaDHRRA and AFA, have started our WTO campaign last year with two fora on the Rice Industry as it is affected by liberalization (February and August, 2004 ) , a civil society consultation on WTO and a civil society-government dialogue on WTO (both in March 2005), all at the regional levels. Our members in the Philippines, South Korea, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam have initiated dialogues with their governments on WTO positions (October-November 2004). Also, our members have participated in the Asian Civil Society Forum (November 2004), facilitating a break-out session on Millennium Development Goals and Farmers. Likewise, we have produced issue papers on GATT-WTO-AoA, Rice Situation in Asia and The UN MDGs (please see copies of issue papers, herein attached). As of this writing these issue papers were being translated into seven different Asian languages.

However, our activities last year have to be expanded in terms of coverage and depth. We would like to popularize the issues on WTO to the farming communities we work with. We would like our farmer leaders to be more articulate and capable of negotiating with their governments. We would like to propose concrete alternatives to economic globalization.

NATURE OF THE CAMPAIGN

In the line of the expose-oppose-propose framework of advocacy, this campaign, at the long-term, will (i) broaden farmers’ understanding on how WTO policies result to more hunger and poverty (ii) increase the farmers’ articulation of its comments / critique and proposals on WTO trade rules and (iii) build the initiatives of AFA and AsiaDHRRA in building sustainable models that promote the food sovereignty principle. The campaign will seek to reach farmers down to the village levels.

The campaign, at the long term, will have the following major components: (i) massive information dissemination to farmers; (ii) capacity building; (iii) policy advocacy; (iv) direct actions; (v) building of alternatives and models on food sovereignty; and (vi) networking and solidarity building.

For the year 2005, this campaign can be seen as a support to the Global Call for Action against Poverty (GCAP) movement and the Trade Justice campaign. A signature cum group photo campaign will be conducted. Through a massive information campaign, farmer-participants will be asked to sign a written statement (this can be a big banner with the main call or a 1-paged statement in paper) wear a white band, and have their group picture taken. The pictures and the statement will be posted in the AFA and AsiaDHRRA websites. The signed statement will be given to the government WTO negotiators and the WTO negotiators from the rich countries, particularly the United States, Japan and European Union.

CONSTITUENCY

This campaign will directly involve members and partners of Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA) and Asian Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Asia (AsiaDHRRA ) and Asian Partnership for Human Development (APHD) in the countries of Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, SKorea, Taiwan, Japan.

CAMPAIGN OBJECTIVES

At the end of the one year campaign, we would like to have achieved the following:

1. To increase the awareness of Asian farmers and NGO leaders about (i) the developments in the WTO round of talks (the July framework) leading to Dec 2005 WTO Ministerial Meeting in Hongkong.
2. to engage the government trade negotiators in firming up governmental positions to WTO
3. to increase the capacities of Asian farmer leaders in advocating for AFA’s and AsiaDHRRA’s advocacy positions concerning WTO
4. to establish cooperation between like-minded trade negotiators and civil society leaders, both at the national and regional levels, and strategize how best to approach trade talks such that small farmers in developing countries can be better protected
5. to forge solidarity with international farmers and civil society groups who have made the same calls and demands

ADVOCACY POSITIONS

Members of AFA and AsiaDHRRA have agreed that the following positions should be demanded to government WTO trade negotiators and to leaders of WTO:

1. formulate policies that will protect the small farmers and minimize debilitating effects of WTO agricultural policies
2. work for the elimination for trade distorting domestic support measures and export subsidies of highly developed countries
3. calibrate market access and tariff reforms in consideration of the people’s agricultural conditions
4. Ensure that our country has meaningful access to special products (SPs) we have selected on grounds of food and livelihood security and rural development. The principle of SPs should be an integral part of new and subsequent rounds of negotiations.
5. ensure that our country has access to a special safeguard mechanism which is: easy to implement, automatically triggered (both in terms of price and volumes), open to all agricultural products and under which both duties and quantitative restrictions could apply
6. Refuse liberalization of basic services such as water, electricity under the GATS.
7. Refuse liberalization of fisheries sector under the Non-Agriculture Market Access (NAMA).
8. protect farmers’ rights to control seeds
9. ensure participation of civil society leaders in task forces and committees engaged by governments in trade policy formulation and reviews

CAMPAIGN TARGETS

AFA and AsiaDHRRA members will intensify efforts to influence the decisions of the WTO agricultural trade negotiators in their own countries. In solidarity with other international groups, we will contribute to advocacy efforts addressed to WTO world leaders.

CAMPAIGN STRATEGIES

1. Expand Information and Education Campaign (IEC) to farmers through a signature and group photo campaign
2. Strengthen the capacities of AFA and AsiaDHRRA leaders on policy advocacy and campaign management
3. Intensify lobby work with country WTO agricultural trade negotiators
4. Direct Action
5. Building of Alternatives
6. Networking and Linkaging

MAJOR ACTIVITIES

In-Country Activities : ( July- October) Member countries of AFA and AsiaDHRRA, except for Laos since it is not yet a member of WTO, are committed to do the following :

1. Area consultations

a. Dates: The area consultations will be conducted within the months of July-October.
b. Participants: The consultations will be conducted at the provincial or town levels, with a minimum of 300 participants for all consultations. Participants should be leaders of the organization at the town or village level.
c. Outputs: Main outputs of the area consultations will be a (i) banner and (ii) a group photo of participants wearing armbands ( messages can include “ end poverty now!” “Just and fair trade!” The achievement of the outputs will be very important. All AFa members will bring to Hongkong all the banners they have produced during the information campaign. In Hongkong, AFA leaders will stitch them together; these will form our mural in Hongkong, or even our banner which we can bring when we join marches/rallies. The group photo will be uploaded in our website and will be included in a publication about our WTO 2005 campaign activities.
d. Conduct: AFA leadership in each country will conduct one-day consultation/fora at the provincial/district or town level. The topic of the consultation will be the orientation on WTO, effects of WTO on the agricultural sector, our demands and our proposals. During these consultations/for a, AFA/AsiaDHRRA issue papers, posters and leaflets, as translated by each country, can be distributed to the participants.

On the banner- After each consultation, the participants will write on a banner the group’s message for WTO ministers. The banner’s material will be a sack made of organic material ( thus, not plastic). English translation of the message will be written in the banner. AFA members’ delegates to Hongkong will bring all these banners to Hongkong.

on the group photo – After each consultation, the participants will take a picture of themselves, with the banner, and showing their white armbands

2. Signature campaign ( July- October 2005)

Each AFA member will gather at least 5,000 signatures from farmers for a petition paper ( see sample attached). The signatures can be gathered by the participants who attended the area level consultations.

The original signatures will be sent to the head of government (President or Prime Minister). Duplicate copies will be sent to the head of agricultural WTO negotiations and AFA/AsiaDHRRA Secretariat. The latter will compile a list of signatories, and will email this list to agricultural trade negotiators of G33 and G8 members.

3. Engagement with government WTO negotiators – AsiaDHRRA members in each country will convene country consultations with civil society and dialogue with government WTO negotiators. During the initial dialogue, the parties will level off on perspectives and position. Expected result of this dialogue will be better understanding between the two parties on positions being taken and identification of avenues or mechanisms whereby civil society groups can be involved in formulating the final positions of government in the trade talks. In the succeeding dialogues, the parties will discuss and debate with the government with regards the latters’ positions on WTO and the assessment of the Millennium Development Goal report. We will do this, if possible, with other groups who share the same advocacy positions. We may also join government’s WTO strategy teams, should their governments share similar positions and proposals

4. Commemoration of death of Lee Kyung Hae – Each AFA member will conduct a simple activity on September 8 to commemorate the death of farmer-leader Lee Kyung Hae, former Chairperson of Korean Advanced Farmers’ Federation (KAFF) who went on hunger strike in Cancun and who later stabbed himself to death to protest WTO, which he said, and “WTO kills farmers”. The activity is culturally-specific to a country – can be a vigil, a mass, a prayer, or others. This activity can be done with other farmer groups in the country.

5. Printing and distribution of WFD posters– Each AFA member will distribute and post posters on World Food Day (WFD) posters in strategic places in the capital city.

6. Translation, printing and distribution of leaflets– These leaflets can be distributed during area consultations and signature campaign.

7. Regular action-reflection-action at the country level- Each member of the core group of advocates will be encouraged to share their experiences and learnings to every one in the group through electronic communication.
8. World Food Day celebration – Each AFA member will commemorate World Food Day on October 16. We can join bigger mobilizations in our own countries or stage our own, if there is none. The WFD message will primarily focus on keeping the commitments to the MDGS and making agricultural global trade fair and just. While the actions are done per country, these actions will be coordinated at the regional level.

9. Country level alliances – AFA and AsiaDHRRA members in each country will be encouraged to join national alliances and coalitions working on WTO and MDG issues.

Regional activities

1. conduct of training on advocacy and campaign management (October ) A pool , or core group of advocates, consisting of two farmer leaders and two NGO leaders in each country, will be formed. They will be trained as leaders who can confidently speak about issues on WTOs and Millennium Project. Because of this, they will act as lead lobbyists for MDG and WTO concerns in their own countries. They will also become spokespersons for their organizations on these issues.

2. Civil Society Consultation Workshop (October) – A consultation workshop among civil society participants will be held to discuss results of the previous activities. Expected result of this workshop is a plan on (i) civil society advocacy at the regional level on upcoming WTO ministerial meeting ; and (ii) how to carry out the dialogue with trade negotiators at the regional level
3. Dialogue with Trade Negotiators, Regional Level – A dialogue between selected government trade negotiators and key civil representatives will be held at the regional level. This dialogue is expected to result in formulating processes and strategies on how civil society groups and government negotiators can work together at the regional level so that developing countries can have a stronger voice as one group in the WTO talks (much like G21 in Cancun, Mexico).

4. Activities during the WTO MC in Hongkong
a. Forum on Alternatives to Economic Globalization- We do not only expose and oppose unjust policies and programs, we would like also to propose alternatives. We would like to start studying alternatives to the current economic globalization. We will start this year by mapping these alternative models. We would like to identify current models being adapted and try to get the learnings of the implementers in doing these models. A data base will be provided in the website. A conference discussing these various alternative models will be conducted, during the ministerial meeting in Hongkong, as a parallel activity

b. Participation in Common mobilizations – Working with the Hongkong People’s Alliance against WTO (HKPA), we will join the common mobilizations, scheduled on Dec. 12, 13, 16 and 18.

c. Small but dramatic actions – We like to stage but small but dramatic, media-catching direct actions during the Ministerial meeting; the concrete form will be discussed during the Executive Committee meetings of AFA and AsiaDHRRA.