The People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty (PCFS) gathered its members in West Asia and North Africa (WANA) region as part of its efforts to consolidate and strengthen the coalition globally.
PCFS global chairpersons Razan Zuayter and Sylvia Mallari led the regional meeting held 11 November 2019 in Amman, Jordan. Members of the Arab Group for the Protection of Nature (APN), which is helmed by Zuayter, sent representatives to the meeting. They were also joined by Rhoda Gueta, PCFS Global Secretariat Coordinator, and Mariam Al Jaajaa, APN Manager.
The meeting was divided into two sessions. The first session focused on organizational matters. The assembly identified the Arab Network for Food Sovereignty (ANFS) as the nucleus of PCFS in the region.
Gueta reported the activities of PCFS from October 2018 to 2019. She also discussed the coalition’s five-point program of action. Participants agreed to reinforce the global campaigns in the region through the promotion of local products, support to the million-tree campaign in Palestine, production and sale of traditional seeds to combat transnational corporations, and the continuing campaign to stop the wars and conflicts in the Arab region. They also identified the proliferation of GMOs and chemical pesticides as an important issue in the region. The assembly resolved to hold trainings on food sovereignty and on the promotion and packaging of local products.
During the second session, the assembly tackled China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Al Jaajaa gave a brief presentation on the topic. Mallari also shared the BRI experience in Southeast Asia. The assembly was not able to conclude a position on the BRI, but participants agreed that the issue is important considering the involvement of several Arab countries. They resolved to further study the Chinese megaproject.
Participants closed the meeting with high spirits, committing to advance people’s food sovereignty in WANA through the strengthening of the platform.
The organizations that attended the PCFS WANA meeting are APN, National Confederation of Traditional Fishing in Morocco, Iraqi Society for Nutrition and Food Safety, National Observatory of Participatory Citizenship in Tunisia, Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees (PARC), Stop the Wall Campaign in Palestine, Hawa Society for Women in Sudan, Palestinian Farmers Union, and Dana Cooperative in Jordan.
The PCFS WANA meeting was organized following the resolution made during the PCFS General Assembly held October 2018 in Thailand. ###