The Initiative Towards a Different Europe
The ITDE is a forum consisting of popular movements and political parties, who are planning demonstrations and other activities during the Danish EU-Presidency in the second half of 2002.
About The Initiative Towards a Different Europe
The ITDE came into existence during a meeting on January 5, 2002 of representatives from different organizations i.e. ATTAC, The Red-Green Alliance, The Socialist Peoples Party, The Socialist Youth Front, The Youth League of Socialist Peoples Party, RAV (Women Against the European Union), The International Socialists and Global Roots.
The aim of the ITDE is to make it possible for progressive domestic and international organizations to go to Denmark under the Danish EU-presidency in order to show that there is a different Europe from the one presented by the governments leaders, the European Commission and the multinational corporations.
The ITDE has a sceptical approach to the European Union and wishes to mobilize internationally against the neo-liberal aspects of the EU policies. Earlier mobilizations by the organizations behind the ITDE include Amsterdam 1997, Cologne 1999, Lisbon 2000, Nice 2000 and Gothenburg 2001.
The ITDE co-operates with other groups such as the organization "Stop the Union - Copenhagen 2002" and the NGO Forum "Stop the Violence" in planning various activities during the EU summit. "Stop the Union - Copenhagen 2002" is based on a distinct EU-resistance platform. The NGO Forum "Stop the Violence" is a broad forum for all organizations aiming at creating a framework and providing facilities for all activities on a non-violent basis. The Initiative Towards a Different Europe - as well as "Stop the Union - Copenhagen 2002" - is a part of the "Stop the Violence" movement.
The culmination of activities will be a public European demonstration during the EU summit meeting in Copenhagen on December 14, 2002.
In preparation for the EU summit in the autumn 2002 the ITDE will arrange demonstrations and other activities in connection with meetings of the Council of Ministers.
The ITDE strongly supports the notion of non-violence. We want absolutely peaceful demonstrations and activities and it is an important part of our work to secure that aim.
The Initiative is based on the following political platform, which was decided on at the meeting on January 5, 2002. We call on all domestic and international organizations to join this platform before the Copenhagen EU summit meeting:
"The Initiative Towards a Different Europe"
Our World is not for Sale - People Before Profit
We want to create popular mobilization in order to create a different Europe, where democracy, solidarity with the developing countries and protection of the environment is placed at the head of the agenda. A different Europe from the European Union we experience today, where the multinational giants are setting the agenda and the needs of ordinary people are too often pushed aside.
A different Europe is becoming more necessary than ever, seeing that the gap between rich and poor countries is constantly widening. The environment is being destroyed. There is an undermining of democratic rights and the rule of law. At the same time an unimpeded neo-liberal globalization is leading to privatization, social cuts and social problems in a vast number of countries, which are affecting women in particular.
We are protesting against an undemocratic EU. The cornerstone of the European Monetary Union is a neo-liberalism which is detrimental to employment, solidarity and democracy.
We declare our solidarity with Eastern Europe, which is forced to carry out social cuts and mindless privatization, in order to gain access to Western European markets.
We are opposed to the militarization of the European Union, against racism and against the build-up of a Fortress Europe. We wish to defend fundamental democratic rights and the rule of law, which are now being undermined by the European Union, using a handful of terrorists as their excuse.
Progressive movements and organizations in every European country must co-operate with popular movements in other parts of the world in a spirit of common solidarity. This is why Nordic grassroots movements and organizations have created "The Initiative Towards a Different Europe". We wish to organize peaceful and popular activities in cooperation with other progressive movements before and during the EU summit meeting in Copenhagen in December 2002. The activities will culminate in a public European demonstration during the summit meeting, during which the following slogans will be emphasised:
- Strengthen democratic rights - No to the terror packages of the EU and government-leaders
- For a multicultural society - No to Fortress Europe and racism
- For peace and international co-operation - No to the militarization of the EU
- No to neo-liberalism - don't turn the public sector into a commodity
- Solidarity with Eastern Europe - for equality between countries - No to neo-liberal demands for accession to EU
- Environmental considerations are more important than considerations of profit
- International solidarity - Cancel the debt of the Third World and create "fair trade"
- Against the neo-liberal dictates made by The International Monetary Fund (IMF), The World Trade Organization (WTO) and the European Central Bank (ECB),
- For a sustainable agricultural production - No to the agricultural policy of the EU
Invitation to the International Meeting May 26, 2002 in Copenhagen
The ITDE would like to prepare the activities together with partners from other countries as much as possible. Therefore, we would like you to attend our international meeting May 26 in Copenhagen. The meeting will be held from 10 am to 5 pm.
NOTE: THIS MEETING WAS ORIGINALLY PLANNED TO BE HELD MAY 5 2002.
If you are able to attend, please e-mail us on email@example.com and you will receive an exact schedule and information about the location of the meeting.
Calendar of Activities
July 19: Ministers of Environment meet in Sønderborg. Danish youth organizations’ protest activities.
August 18 - 19: INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE - BOOK YOUR CALENDAR NOW! The conference gathers progressive left forces on the basis of the political platform. The conference marks the official launch of the activities organized by the ITDE. The conference deals with political as well as practical and organizational matters.
August 31: Foreign Ministers meet in Helsingør (August 30-31). Protest activities organized by "Stop the Union - Copenhagen 2002". The ITDE organizes a bicycle caravan from Copenhagen (3 hour ride).
September 5: The Council of Foreign Ministers meets in Copenhagen to preliminary discussions before the ASEM-summit September 22-24. The ITDE organizes protests.
September 7 Demonstration arranged by the ITDE and "Stop the Union - Copenhagen 2002" in Copenhagen against EU and its neo-liberal politics in the EU in connection with the ECOFIN-summit (September 6 - 8).
September 11: The ITDE arranges protests against the continuing attacks on civil rights and democracy the day before the informal Council of Ministers meeting (September 12-13) on issues related to judicial and internal affairs.
September 14-15: INTERNATIONAL CO-ORDINATION MEETING in Copenhagen. BOOK YOUR CALENDAR NOW!
September 22-24: ASEM-summit: ATTAC and third world NGO's arrange alternative summit.
13 -15. December: INTERNATIONAL MOBILIZATION: Official EU-summit (December 12-13) - and various counter summit activities (meetings, happenings, civil disobedience etc.)
December 13: Torchlight procession against racism and the xenophobic policies of the Danish government.
December 14: INTERNATIONAL DEMONSTRATION arranged by the ITDE on the basis of the political platform.
December 14 (afternoon): "Peoples Forum" arranged by the NGO-Form "Stop the Violence": Demonstration
How to contact The Initiative Towards a Different Europe: Initiativet for et andet Europa, C/o SUFStudiestræde 24 DK-1455 Copenhagen K. E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org You can also take a look at the website (up and running by mid-May): www.cph2002.org