ILPS Chairperson Prof. Jose Maria Sison introduces the International League of Peoples' Struggle
Imperialism remains the main threat to the world's indigenous peoples, national minorities, oppressed nationalities and nations and to their lands and territories, their cultures and collective identities. This compels them to intensify, heighten and escalate their struggles on a variety of forms, fronts and levels to ensure their collective survival and attain self-determination and liberation.
In the past decade, imperialism and local reaction intensified national oppression, discrimination and racism on the world's indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities.
The perpetration of the policy of neoliberal globalization by the US and other imperialist powers in collaboration with their puppet states have resulted to the:
further acceleration of the plunder of ancestral lands, territories and natural resources;
heightened repression and state terrorism aptly guided by the US-led global 'war on terror' and the US Counterinsurgency Guide; and,
deepened discrimination and chauvinism against indigenous peoples, national minorities, and oppressed nationalities.
Neoliberal globalization accelerated the intrusion of large-scale resource-extractive ventures and so-called development projects into their ancestral lands and territories. Large-scale mining operations; agricultural mono-crop and biofuels plantations; commercial logging, agroforestry and industrial tree plantations; commercial fishing; oil and gas exploration and development; special economic zones and export processing zones; tourism and eco-tourism projects; military reservations and bases; large dams and energy-generation facilities; and, infrastructure development such as oil and gas pipelines, roads, ports and transportation networks ravaged the lands, exploited the resources, degraded and polluted the environment. Worst, land rights were grossly and the people dispossesed, displaced, forcibly removed or resettled from their traditional territories.
Land and natural resources are rapidly commodifed, privatized and controlled by a few big landlords, big bureaucrats and big capitalist business interests.
Hand-in-hand, indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities face the brutal repression and violent attacks of the state armed apparatus in retaliation to their resistance to defend their rights and lands. Serious human rights violations are committed without let up. The demonization, criminalization and blatant murder of leaders and activists, branded as “terrorists” under the US-led “war on terror” continue. Goaded by this imperialist “war of terror” and now directed by the US COIN Guide, puppet regimes enacted national or internal security laws to justify and legalize forcible political subjugation; and/or launched violent and brutal counter-insurgecy campaigns against resisting communities. Massive militarization and bombings of communities, massacres, murder and extra-judicial killings, abductions and forced disappearances, harassments, forced recruitment to para-military groups formed by the state military forces and other grave violations of their individual and collective human rights are carried out with impunity.
Imperialism and local reaction fortified institutionalized discrimination and deepened chauvinism, racism and religious bigotry against indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities. Systemic discrimination from the State and its institutions manifest in the continued assimilation and integration policies that include resettlement and active population transfer, leading to further minoritization; non-recognition as peoples with equal status as citizens; political misrepresentation, economic marginalization; and the bastardization and commercialization of indigenous cultures. At its worst, discrimination leads to the wanton and gross violations of human rights and violence (like murder, massacres, rape and sexual assaults), systematic persecution and ethnic cleansing.
Imperialism opened another flank in the U.S.-led 'war on terror' – a devious cultural attack affecting our Muslim brothers and sisters all over the world. The US-led 'war on terror' promoted and heightened Islamophobia and racial profiling to further deepen the discrimination, bigotry, xenophobia and subjugation of the Muslim peoples.
Dicrimination, racism, national oppression and the utter disregard and violation of the indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities' right to self-determination lead to ethnocide and genocide.
But the intensified plunder and dispossession of the lands and territories, the heightened political repression and worsened discrimination steels the indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities to remain committed and steadfast in their struggles for self-detemination and liberation.
The past decade also saw the resurgence and advance of the movements of indigenous peoples, national minorities, oppressed nationalities and nations for self-determination and liberation. These movements independently, in alliance or as part of a broader national peoples' movements engage in armed and underground struggles; and/or legal, parliamentary and open militant struggles. They continue to advance, gain strength and achieved various victories in many countries in Asia , Latin America, Africa and even in a number of capitalist countries. These movements express and strive to achieve self-detemination in various ways and forms – through legal recognition and proportionate representation in State mechanisms, autonomous self-rule, federalism, independence, and separation or outright secession from the oppressive state.
At the community and national levels, organizations and alliances continue to politicize their constituents; organize, expand and build their influence and strength; and undertake varied collective actions to carry forward their resistance and struggles.
Other puppet states and regimes acceded to enact policies, amend their constitutions and/or passed legislation purportedly to recognize the rights of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities. Even some capitalist countries, in symbolic gestures, apologized for the historic injustice against indigenous peoples and recognized land claim settlements. But still these fall short of the full guarantee and enjoyment of genuine empowerment and self-governance of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities.
In countries where indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities wage armed struggles, governments are obliged to engage these armed movements in peace talks and negotiations.
The just and legitimate struggles and movements of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities have gained ground not only in the local and national levels but also in the international arena. Organizations and representatives of their movements actively participate in different international fora and activities, engage in the various issues that affect them (i.e. decolonization, human rights, women and environment) and joined or formed issue-based regional and global networks on these concerns. There is increasing support, solidarity action and advocacy for their issues and the cause of self-determination and liberation.
In 2007, despite the machinations of imperialism and the local reactionaries, the active lobby of indigenous peoples within the United Nations system, that started in the early 1980s, resulted in the adoption by the UN General Assembly of the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) and the establishment of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues.
More recently, indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities gathered in an international conference passed a major resolution to establish an international movement of indigenous peoples for self-determination and liberation. It identifies the global capitalist system as the root cause of the enormous problems faced by the world's peoples. It called for the building of a strong and united international indigenous peoples movement that stands for the right of peoples to govern themselves and struggle for liberation from imperialism and state oppression.
The advance and victories achieved by the movements of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities today, is borne out of a long-drawn historical resistance and struggles against centuries of injustice by colonization, conquest or occupation. It is a conviction and the resoluteness to survive, assert their distinct sovereign identities and attain self-determination, liberation and development long denied by colonial and modern states.
It is imperative for and a challenge to the broad international anti-imperialist peoples' movement to build, consolidate and develop solidarity with organizations and movements of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities at the national, regional and international arenas along anti-imperialist and democratic line of struggle.
In this light, the International League of Peoples Stuggles, in its Fourth International Assembly, hereby resolve to:
Build and strengthen the ILPS Commission on the rights of indigenous peoples, national minorities, oppressed nationalities and nations for self-determination and decolonization against discrimination, racism and national oppression perpetrated by imperialism and local reaction;
Strengthen the solidarity of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities against imperialism; establish and develop relations with other indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities around the world; and build stronger unity with them against imperialism and local reaction for the realization of their right to self-determination and liberation. Consciously link their struggles with the class struggle against the common enemy, which is imperialism
Wage a sustained campaign against the unhampered plunder and destruction of ancestral territories and resources by multinational/transnational corporations and reactionary states; against the heightened repression and state terrorism directed by the US-led imperialist 'war on terror' and the US Counterinsurgency Guide operationalized through national security laws, brutal counter-insurgency campaigns and massive psy-war operations; and against deepened discrimination and chauvinism towards indigenous peoples, national minorities, and oppressed nationalities
Actively participate in various national, regional and international fora to highlight the issues of discrimination, racism and national oppression perpetrated by imperialism and local reaction against the indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities; promote their distinct identities and their right to self-determination and gather solidarity in support of their cause.
Conduct a systematic study to deepen the understanding of the diverse situations of indigenous peoples, national minorities, oppressed nationalities and nations; the present-day forms of national oppression, and the theory and practice of self-determination;
Link up and unite the movements and struggles of indigenous peoples, national minorities and oppressed nationalities with the movements and struggles of oppressed classes and sectors and actively participate in the international united front against imperialism.
Adopted by the Participants of the Workshop on Concern 10 T'boli Hall, Ciudad Christina Philippines 7-8 July 2011
Please sign the online petition for the Netherlandsgovernment to grant permanent residence to Professor Jose Maria Sison.
Click on the image to download campaign flyer.