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15th INTERNATIONAL MEETING OF COMMUNIST AND WORKERS’ PARTIES

PCP Cunhal rally

Picture shows the rally to mark the 100th anniversary of the birth of Alvaro Cunhal attended by delegates to the International Conference of Communist and Workers Parties

LISBON, 8 -10 NOVEMBER 2013

PRESS RELEASE by Portuguese Communist Party

The 15th International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties was held in Lisbon, on November 8-10, under the motto “The deepening of the crisis of capitalism, the role of the working class and the communists’ tasks in the struggle for the workers and peoples’ rights. Imperialism’s offensive, the realignment of forces at the international level, the national question, class emancipation and the struggle for socialism”

In the Meeting, 75 parties, from 63 countries participated and greetings were received from an additional 14 parties which, for various reasons, were not able to participate. The Meeting analysed, among other main aspects, the development of the international situation in the context of the deepening of the structural crisis of capitalism and of a complex process of realignment of forces at the international level, alerting to the great dangers deriving from imperialism’s offensive.

At the same time, the participants saluted and valued the resistance and struggle of the workers and peoples, reaffirming the real potential that the current situation holds for the development of the liberating struggle, for profound changes in the anti-monopolist and anti-imperialist direction, for Socialism.

The Meeting noted the deepening of the crisis that exploded in 2008 with the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy. A crisis that is far from over, belying the ruling class discourse on an alleged “recovery” and confirming the analyses of the communists about its nature and evolution which, among other aspects, confirms it as a crisis of over-production and over-accumulation of capital. A crisis that expresses the sharpening of capitalism’s contradictions – in particular its fundamental contradiction between the social character of production and its private appropriation – highlighting the historical limits of the system and the timeliness of the struggle for the fundamental alternative to capitalism – Socialism.

It denounced the aim of big capital, of the major imperialist powers and their international and supranational structures of imperialist concertation – such as the European Union – to impose on the workers and peoples a social regression of a civilizational dimension assaulting economic, labour and social rights, violently attacking the living conditions of the working and popular masses and declaring war on the sovereignty and independence of States.

It referenced in particular the harsh reality of the peoples and the impact of the crisis and of the capitalist offensive on developing countries, where the peoples find their right to economic and social development even more curtailed. In this framework, attention was drawn to the impact of capitalism’s crisis on agriculture and food, jeopardising still more the food sovereignty of numerous countries and dooming great masses of the world population to starvation and malnutrition.

It highlighted the dangers that arise from the intensification of the militarist, warmongering and interference policy of the major imperialist powers and NATO. It stressed that the wars of aggression, the processes of interference and instigation of internal conflicts, the strengthening of repressive, authoritarian, control and espionage measures are part of the force-based response by big capital to capitalism’s crisis, having as its central aims to maintain the control of the resources and sources of energy and contain the revolt, the struggle of the peoples and the inevitable social and revolutionary explosions that the current situation entails.

Participants expressed their solidarity with the ongoing struggles in all continents against the aggressive imperialist offensive, for social progress, independence and sovereignty, peace, the right to social and economic development, for the construction of alternatives of sovereignty and progress to imperialism’s hegemonic domination, the real fundamental alternative to capitalist barbarity – socialism. It reaffirmed the central role of the working class and its alliance with other anti-monopolist strata in defence of their rights, namely the right to employment, for labour and social rights, in defence of the social functions of States.

Participants valued and expressed their solidarity with all the peoples who resist imperialism’s policies of interference and aggression – especially to the peoples of the Middle East, saluting the ongoing struggles in that region against all forms of aggression and oppression, for sovereignty, democracy, social justice and national unity, as in Egypt and Tunisia. It reaffirmed its solidarity with the Palestinian people and their struggle for national rights, as well as with other peoples in the region who are victims of aggressions and interferences, such as the Syrian people.

In a framework of continuing resistance and gathering of forces, but where the potential for the development of a revolutionary struggle grows, important factors emerge in various regions of the world to contain imperialism’s hegemonic domination. Participants saluted and valued the struggle of the peoples, of the communists and other progressive forces in Latin America, considering that the processes of struggle, progressive and of sovereign affirmation in this region, as well as the cooperation based on solidarity that is emerging in the region, constitute an important factor and stimulus for the development and strengthening of the anti-imperialist struggle. The participants reasserted their solidarity with Cuba and its socialist revolution, as well as with the Venezuelan people and their Bolivarian revolution, among others.

It stressed the importance of the struggle in defence of democratic freedoms, against the advance of the far right, against xenophobia and racism, against religious fanaticism and obscurantism, against anti-communism. It reaffirmed solidarity with other communist parties and all revolutionary forces that are the target of political persecution and anti-communist campaigns – namely in the European continent, which is carried out by several governments as well as by institutions like the European Union.

Concrete experiences of struggle in different countries and regions were present in most interventions, confirming that the workers and peoples do not conform and that, even in the current difficult conditions, liberating advances and achievements of an anti-monopolist and anti-capitalist nature are possible.

It was affirmed that socialism increasingly emerges as the real fundamental alternative to capitalism and its crisis. Drawing lessons from the delays, mistakes and distortions that countered basic principles of socialism, but valuing as highly positive the experiences of building socialism and what they meant and mean for Humanity, highlighting the achievements of the new social system, recognising that there are no models of revolution, the participants stressed the determining role of the masses in the construction and management of socialist societies.

It was stressed that the current international situation makes it particularly necessary to strengthen the cooperation among all progressive and anti-imperialist forces and, firstly, among communist and workers’ parties from all over the world, one of the most solid guarantees for the strengthening of the peoples’ struggle and the construction of the alternative of socialism. In this sense, the rich experience and advances made with the International Meetings of Communist and Workers’ Parties was highlighted, as a space for exchange of information, experiences and opinions, of possible convergence of positions and decisions on common and converging initiatives, reaffirming the importance of ensuring their continuity.

The Meeting adopted various lines and initiatives of common or converging action by Communist and Workers’ Parties to be materialised until the 16th IMCWP (which can be found at the end of this press release), having mandated the Working Group to stimulate and monitor their implementation and materialisation.

The International Meeting welcomed the existence of three proposals for the venue of the 16th Meeting. Its date, place and motto will be decided during the meeting of the Working Group of the International Meetings of Communist and Workers’ Parties to be held in due time.

Lisbon, November 10, 2013

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