Latin America Conference 2017 – The most vital to date?

This year’s Latin America conference was one of the biggest to date, but with Trump in charge of US foreign policy was it the most vital yet?

 

The event had over 500 in attendance and was opened by renowned British filmmaker Ken Loach who explained that “US history in Latin America is cruel, brutal and shows that its claims to be interested in spreading freedom and democracy are a lie”.

 

At a vital time for Latin America and Venezuela, with Trump imposing yet more crippling sanctions on the country, the Venezuela Solidarity Campaign was hosting busy workshops throughout the Latin America Conference 2017 to give our solidarity and to take a stand against US intervention in the region.

 

The workshops covered a range of topics and featured interesting guests from across Britain and Venezuela. Speaking at the ‘No to Trump’s Military Threats and Regime Change Agenda’ former MP George Galloway was quick to point out the real reasons behind Trump’s aggression towards Venezuela: “The oil revenues are distributed to the mass of the people, rather than kept in the hands of an oligarchy.”

 

Amongst the guest speakers was Mickey Brady, Sinn Fein MP, who reported back from his recent trip observing Venezuela’s Constituent Assembly elections. Speaking in the ‘Venezuela & the lessons of Chile session’ he explained that “it serves American interests to have a country that is being manipulated by the extreme right-wing.”

 

The VSC was also lucky to have Egle Sanchez, member of the National Constituent Assembly and President of the Venezuelan Graphic Workers Federation, visiting from Venezuela who gave a first-hand account of the situation in Venezuela and opened with a fantastic quote from Chavez, “in order to eradicate poverty, put the poor in power.”

 

She went on to explain the threat that Trump and the US poses to the Latin American country stating “they want to gain control of our natural resources and stop us using them to bring people out of poverty.”

 

After a busy day with hundreds in attendance at our workshops and visiting our stall, Venezuelan Ambassador H.E Rocio Maneiro praised the ‘important force’ of support that the conference gives.

 

This fantastic conference featured workshops, speakers, films and art installations from across Latin America and further. Every year it gives solidarity activists a great chance to hear about developments in Ecuador, Brazil, Cuba, Mexico, Argentina, Colombia, El Salvador, Bolivia and of course, Venezuela.

 

International solidarity matters, and at the Latin American Conference, you can see and hear the effect it is having world-wide.

 

The event was co-hosted by the Cuba Solidarity Campaign and the Nicaragua Solidarity Campaign Action Group, be sure to check out further reports of the conference here and here.