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Protest against Poverty Policies In The Pacific

Protest against Policies which Promote Poverty in the Pacific

Global Peace and Justice Auckland supporters have organised a picket outside the opening session of the leaders meeting at the Pacific Islands Forum this Saturday, August 16 from 8.30am at the Sheraton
Hotel, Symonds Street, Auckland.

GPJA intends to focus attention on the actions of the New Zealand and Australian governments in using their political and economic influence to promote free trade and neo-liberal policies throughout the South Pacific which are producing widespread instability, poverty and misery.

These are the very policies which have so dramatically failed in New Zealand - for example leading to one-third of our children now living in poverty - and yet our government is trying to force them onto our Pacific neighbours. The Pacific Islands Forum is one of the main vehicles for this pressure to be developed. As it has been the case with market reform all over the world, the reforms being promoted by New Zealand and Australia for the Pacific will allow transnational corporations to:
- pollute hire private militias,
- confiscate customary land,
- destroy ecological habitats,
- displace indigenous populations and
- force primitive indigenous populations to abandon local culture in favour of integration into capitalist economic systems.

It is these very policies which have produced poverty and instability around the Pacific and from which New Zealand and Australia are now seeking to impose a colonial military solution instead of dealing with the fundamental issues. The Solomon Islands is a classic current example.

The protest will also focus on the Australian and New Zealand governments' decision to send troops to join the illegal occupation of Iraq. Far from providing positive leadership, New Zealand is helping US imperialism extend its influence around the world and through our own back yard.

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