European Network for Peace and
Human Rights Launch Conference,
European Parliament, Brussels
31 January/1 February 2002
We come from many different countries, municipalities and
recognise that all of us live in a world of fear and insecurity.
We hold in
common the belief that the first aim in all disputes should be
solutions which build and secure peace, guarantee human rights,
A better world is possible. We call for new concepts of security,
disarmament, welfare not warfare, education for peace, and peaceful
of overcoming conflict through a reformed and strengthened United
But we face a turning point. We are in a situation where the
military and economic power on earth has declared war on its
enemies as it
perceives them. This it has done with the support of most European
Governments. We express our profound sympathy for all victims
including state terror. But war cannot be the way to defeat terror.
United States has shown itself ready to unleash the most prodigious
of destruction against human beings and their means of livelihood.
extending its power from land, sea and air into space and information
achieve what its commanders call "full spectrum dominance",
at the same
time that it pressures others to support its actions.
We refuse to do that, and call upon our fellow Europeans to
join with us in
our refusal to become accomplices in such a development.
We have special responsibilities in Europe to work for peace,
dissolution of NATO rather than its expansion, and for peaceful
instead of the militarisation of the European Union. This is
because of our relative wealth, but also because of our history
warfare and external aggression.
We have now established a European Network for Peace and Human
look forward to its extension. We recognise the growing movements
protest throughout the world, many of them represented at our
convention - peace workers, anti-nuclear and anti-militarist
environmental campaigners, religious groups, women's movements,
movements, relief agencies, fair traders, indigenous peoples'
organisations, human rights and other political organisations,
all those who have joined in protest at the corporate globalisation
trade, services, culture and the resurgent military-industrial
We ask them to join together with others in resistance to
solutions and in the search for peace and global justice. Peace,
and a safe environment are necessary for the world our children
inherit: war is waste and waste is the greatest environmental
democracy depends on free and unlimited discussion, and on the
participation of women, men and youth; allocation of resources
more to the military than to health and education prevents justice.
for these reasons and more that it is necessary to create a movement
sustainable peace and justice.
As a matter of urgency, we strive to:
Open a dialogue with the many movements in the United States
peace and seek an exchange of delegations;
Create an active dialogue with peace and human rights movements
in the new
war zones of the Middle East, opposing violence and injustice
the region of West Asia and Northern Africa, including Israel's
and settlements in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem
and other Arab
territories; and to support the immediate enforcement of the
Convention as an essential first step towards a just and lasting
well as the Palestinian people's inalienable right to self-determination
and independent statehood;
Give support to those movements campaigning for peace in South
Give support to prisoners of conscience; and to those campaigning
right to conscientious objection to military service and taxation;
Strengthen and reform the United Nations system, which could
be the best
answer for Europe and a uniting factor in the struggle against
States hegemony without being anti-American.
Strengthen our links with the World Social Movement, currently
Porto Alegre in Brazil, in its opposition to global militarism
for human rights, sustainable development and democracy.
To further these ends we are establishing a representative
committee to draw up detailed plans, find the necessary resources,
propose co-ordinated actions throughout Europe.
Brussels, 1 February 2002
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