Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Molly has featured two previous reports here from the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) about the recent World Water Forum in Istanbul Turkey. For whatever reasons of their own that Molly cannot understand these reports have omitted reports on the repression of protesters outside the "legitimate opposition" of the likes of CUPE. To my mind CUPE SHOULD have reported this whatever their disagreements with the protesters, and I think it is shameful that they did not. In any case here is a report from the Anarkismo website on what happened outside the conference cocoon.
Turkish police shoot on protesters at the World Water Forum (WWF):
by Coalition Against Water Privatisation - CAWP
WWF nothing more than a gathering of the world’s water mafias
The Coalition Against Water Privatisation and the SA Municipal Workers Union are participating in the alternative People's Forum
At 9.30 this morning (19 March 2009), a group of about 300 Turkish and international activists began a peaceful march towards the entrance of the 5th World Water Forum in Beyoglu to express their concerns about the political agenda of the event and prevent people getting inside. Turkish police forces, outnumbering by far protesters, quickly intervened and charged, using rubber bullets, separating Turkish activists from international protesters and violently dispersing the action.

1 7 Turkish activists from the "No to commercialisation of water platform" were arrested, mostly women who couldn't escape fast enough and one high-profile leader of anti-dam movements. Arrested activists are now in hospital, waiting for their transfer to Vatan police station where they might be prosecuted for illegal protest. The renowned Turkish hospitality seems to not apply to those critical of the World Water Forum.
Other activists then entered the WWF venue to protest against this unacceptable way of treating democratic protests and further challenge the World Water Council and Turkish government's water privatisation plans. The Coalition Against Water Privatisation strongly condemns the repression by the Turkish government; people must express themselves without any fear of police brutality.
The Coalition and the South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) will be presenting the South African water struggle and the landmark Johannesburg High Court ruling (that outlawed prepaid water meters) at the alternative people’s forum. As part of the international day of action, CAWP will be picketing at Johannesburg Water office and holding community mass meetings concerning access to water.
The 6th World Water Forum is illegitimate and its nothing but a gathering of the water industry mafias. The global water movement vowed that they will organise hard to make sure that this is the last World Water Forum organised by water thieves. The next must be organized by the United Nations (UN), and every country must make sure that the human right to water is protected and that access to water and sanitation is a priority. For comment, please contact Petunia Nkhasi (CAWP) on 083 531-3329.

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