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15,000 People Resist Economic Globalization in Festival and Street Actions


September 27, 2000

INPEG Condemns the Escalation of Violence on the Streets Yesterday As It Condemns the Violence of the World Bank and IMF

Prague -- The Initiative Against Economic Globalization (INPEG) is deeply saddened that people have been hurt during the course of events of Tuesday's protests. Over 15,000 people turned out in the streets yesterday to support the INPEG call to shut-down the World Bank and the IMF, precisely because these institutions are engaged in destructive policies that hurt millions of people around the world. We are very upset that people were injured during yesterday's events in Prague, and condemn the escalation of violence we saw in the streets on Tuesday. This escalation is also distracting attention away from the violence of economic globalization that we are working together to stop.

Yesterday's INPEG events were organized to provide a free and open space for people from around the world to express their views on the damage done by economic globalization. They provided an alternative vision, one where the people have the power to create the type of world they want to live in. The morning's events at Namesti Miru were very successful, with a carnival of resistance attended by thousands of activists from different groups and different parts of the world. The procession to the Congress Center effectively challenged the authorities' ban on marching in the city, and filled the streets with people calling for a better world. The direct action around the Congress Center was also successful in keeping most of the delegates to the World Bank and IMF meetings from being able to leave.

The actions of September 26th happened in the context of a global crisis. People around the globe are challenging the legitimacy of the current system of economic globalization. The World Bank, IMF and WTO are the most obvious symbols of this system, and its most powerful proponents. In solidarity with our actions on September 26th, there were hundreds of events in over 40 countries. People took to the streets in cities from Tel Aviv to Toronto. There were events in over 65 cities in the United States alone, in India there were 150 within three days. People are suffering from a system where the majority of the world has no voice in creating the economic system in which they live. Every day, 19,000 children die needlessly because countries are being forced to pay back interest payments on foreign debt rather than invest in health care and education for their people. A movement is building to create a world where the people have a voice to stop situations like this rather than the current system where we hear hollow promises but see little action.