Brazil Says It Has a Lot to Contribute to World Social Forum

The Brazilian government wants to discuss its policies at the American venue of this year’s regionalized edition of the World Social Forum, which will take place in Caracas, capital of Venezuela, from January 24-29.

This information comes from the head of the presidential office staff, minister Luiz Dulci. According to Dulci, ministers and technical staff representatives of the Brazilian government will discuss programs in various areas, such as environment, agrarian reform, culture, the struggle against racism, women’s rights, and youth policy.

"The Brazilian government has a series of practical projects that are of great interest to other countries on the continent and, most of all, to social movements," Dulci noted.

Dulci said that one of the themes that will be debated is the policy to combat deforestation in the Amazon.

"They are very eager to discover how Brazil managed to reverse the perverse tendency that had prevailed for many years. Deforestation did nothing but increase with each passing year, and now, for the first time, deforestation has begun to decline," the Minister underscored.

Another item on the Forum’s agenda is the policy in support of family farming. "The rural workers’ and peasants’ movements and indigenous movements in various countries, such as Bolivia and Peru, have a deep interest in this," he remarked.

The Minister affirmed that Brazilian technical personnel will also present the model of autonomous indigenous schools.

"They are bilingual schools, in which Indian youth learn in their own tongue but also, in our case, study Portuguese. In their case, they would study Spanish," Dulci explained.

The issue of combating racism will also be discussed. "We made a lot of progress in 2005 in bringing benefits to Brazilian "quilombola" communities (formed by descendants of runaway slaves). Many of them received potable water, electricity – through the Light for All program -, and schools," he pointed out.

The World Social Forum is the chief event organized by civil society to discuss the struggle on behalf of democratizing politics and economics.

Four of the first five editions took place in Brazil, in Porto Alegre. In 2004 the meeting was held in Mumbai, India. This year’s format will be different, and the Forum will be split among three continents: Africa, America, and Asia.

Agência Brasil

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