• Michael Laxer

International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties 2021: Actions and roundup

A look at the statements and action pledges of the extraordinary teleconference International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties held this past weekend. "The revolutionary overcoming of capitalism and the construction of a new society, freed from exploitation, are a demand for today and for tomorrow."

Image from outside the KKE headquarters in Greece


As a joint press release of the Communist parties of Greece and Turkey noted today (December 15) the "teleconference of the extraordinary International Meeting of Communist and Workers’ Parties (IMCWP) took place on 10–11 December 2021, under the theme “The international economic, political, and military developments. The experience from the struggle of Communist and Workers’ Parties and the peoples. Solidarity with Cuba, the Palestinian people, and all the peoples struggling against sanctions, machinations, and imperialist aggression”. The teleconference was held under the joint responsibility of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) and the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP)."


73 parties from 57 countries participated. There were representatives from around the world.


The IMCWP is an annual meeting of Communist and Workers' parties that began in 1998 at the imitative of the Communist Party of Greece. Last year it was cancelled due to the pandemic. This year it was held online.


We looked at the statement of the Cuban delegation to the meeting in: "Only international cooperation and solidarity will save humanity".


According to the press release during "the teleconference, valuable experience was exchanged regarding the struggle of the Communist and Workers’ Parties, of the labour and popular movements, under conditions of a pandemic and also of sharpening of the contradiction between capital and labour, intensification of the exploitation and impasses of the historically outdated capitalist mode of production, which, among other things, have a devastating impact on the environment."


The parties pledged to develop joint and convergent actions on the following main axes:

  • Support of the struggles of the working class for workers’–peoples rights, including millions of immigrant workers. Utilization of 1st of May for the promotion of demands for the right to work, health, education, culture; for the protection of the unemployed; for decent salaries and pensions. In solidarity with immigrants and refugees for their rights to live and work on equal conditions, against racism and xenophobia.

  • For protection measures against the pandemic and the reinforcement of public healthcare systems. For the waiver of patent protections for all COVID-19 vaccines and medicines that are being used or developed; for ensuring that all people, especially the poorest countries and the poor popular strata, have access to them. For highlighting the anti-popular and ineffective management of the pandemic by the capital, which has turned it into an opportunity for further exploitation of workers and greater profitability of monopolies.

  • Activities against anti-communism and the distortion of the historical contribution of the USSR and socialism, utilizing milestone anniversaries such as the founding of the USSR on 30 December 1922. Solidarity with communists and militants faced with persecution and bans, against dictatorial regimes, repression, restrictions, and discrimination as regards democratic rights and freedoms, in order to end the unacceptable regime of persecution and bans on Communist Parties.

  • In solidarity with people’s mobilizations against the degradation and destruction of the environment caused by the anarchy of the capitalist production and the race for business profit.

  • Initiatives to promote the necessity, timeliness, and realistic character of socialism as the only alternative to capitalism, in favor of the workers and the peoples in the contemporary conditions.

  • In support of Cuba, its people, and the Communist Party of Cuba; against the interventions and undermining plans of imperialism. For the end of the unacceptable US blockade against Cuba.

  • With the people of Palestine for the end of the occupation, and in favor of self-determination, establishing a national, independent state with occupied East Jerusalem as its capital and for the return of the refugees, in accordance with the UN resolutions, such as the 194 resolution of the General Assembly of the UN, supporting the resistance of the Palestinian people, condemning the criminal policy of Israel and the imperialist proposal of the so-called “deal of the century", and for the release of all political prisoners.

  • Solidarity with all the peoples struggling against foreign occupation, blockades, sanctions, machinations, and imperialist aggression.

  • Support for initiatives developed by pro-peace and anti-imperialist movements for peace and sovereignty, against militarism, imperialist wars and interventions, NATO and other imperialist military alliances, and foreign military bases.

  • Condemnation of the preparation for new imperialist interventions and wars, such as those foreshadowed by the concentration of mass NATO military forces in the borders with Russia that also utilize the provocative plans of the reactionary Ukrainian regime against the people of Donbas.

  • The Communist and Workers’ Parties expressed the need to reinforce their cooperation at a bilateral and regional level and strengthen the efforts to hold the 22nd IMCWP within 2022, taking into consideration the developments around the pandemic.

We are highlighting some notable excerpts from statements by parties around the world, including from Brazil, Britain, India, Laos, Portugal, Swaziland and Vietnam.


Communist Party of Brazil:


In Latin America and Caribbean the people resist and impose defeats on the imperialist counteroffensive. In the last period, important victories occurred, associated with mobilization and popular vote, such as the election of Luis Arce, in Bolivia, in the reversal of the 2019 coup; Alberto Fernández's post-Macrismo leadership in Argentina; the election of a new Constituent Assembly, in Chile, after 30 years of the Pinochetist Constitution; and the victory of Professor Pedro Castillo, in Peru, defeating Fujimorism. In a more systemic way, there is the progressive reactivation of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur), the downfall of the Lima Group and the consolidation of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) as a counterpoint to the Organization of American States (OAS). All of them are signs of the growth of progressive and leftist forces, which increase the isolation of Bolsonaro's foreign policy, in the region and in the world, as an increasingly demoralized government as a global bastion of the far-right.


The Brazilian situation is evolving rapidly, producing, in recent months, decisive inflections in the behavior of political, economic and social forces, which are reflected in researches. Bolsonaro's isolation is growing, while the multiple crisis situation persists, with ups and downs of intensity and gravity in the economic-social, political-institutional, environmental and public policies such as health, education and security. It is evident that the center of the crisis is the government itself, through actions and omissions, promoting persistent political-institutional instability. Despite tactical setbacks, Bolsonaro did not change his strategy. He seeks to bring institutions to an impasse, causing the persistent erosion of institutions and the Democratic Rule of Law, with a view to imposing a break with the democratic regime and instituting an authoritarian political order.


The ultraliberal and neocolonial policy of Bolsonaro deepens the denationalization of the economy; deindustrialization; aggravates exclusion and social and gender inequalities; and penalizes the black population even more. Liberal reforms promoted an increase in the rate of profits and labor exploitation. In the financial system, the two largest private banks increase profits by 74% and 64% in one year. The number of billionaires has grown right here, where there is the second highest concentration of income among more than 180 countries. Meanwhile, more than 800,000 businesses have gone out of business and unemployment is at a record, with 14.8 million people out of work.


Full statement: Extraordinary TeleConference of the IMCWP, Contribution of Brazil


Communist Party of Britain:


Following the overthrow of the socialist systems in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, the general crisis of capitalism was masked for almost two decades by neoliberal 'turbo-capitalism' and imperialist expansion.


Now, that general crisis has reasserted itself with a vengeance.


First, financialisation paved the way to the international financial breakdown and economic recession in the developed capitalist world. People's China, on the other hand, survived these events with little economic damage and no recourse to the austerity policies imposed on the working class and peoples of Britain, Western Europe and North America.


Secondly, global warming and climate change have emerged as a critical dimension of the general crisis, reflecting contradictions in the capitalist mode of production that may well prove to be insoluble.


Significantly, the 15th Report of the UN Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change concluded that the devastating consequences of global warming will only be avoided by what it called 'rapid and far-reaching transitions ... on an unprecedented scale' in industry, transport, energy, construction and land use. The panel proposed a raft of radical measures that would require extensive state intervention against capitalist market forces.


The recent UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow indicated that the capitalist states and monopoly corporations are not yet prepared to embrace many such measures.


The COVID-19 pandemic provides further evidence that capitalism in its general crisis is unwilling or unable to meet even the basic needs of humanity on the scale required.


After more than 5m deaths and 270m infections, we are now in the fourth wave of the pandemic, yet most capitalist states continue to give priority to the interests of the capitalist monopolies when it comes to combatting the impact of COVID.


Full statement: Extraordinary TeleConference of the IMCWP, Contribution of CP of Britain


Communist Party of India (Marxist):


Using the pandemic, the US intended to destabilise socialist Cuba. US imperialists have

tightened the economic blockade and once again categorised Cuba as a country sponsoring terrorism. They used all the social media platforms and internet to instigate the people of Cuba to rise against socialist Cuban State and Communist Party. Their efforts failed because of popular support to the socialist system and the Communist Party of Cuba. As communists, it is our duty to stand in solidarity with Cuba and oppose imperialist machinations against Cuba. We oppose US sanctions on DPRK, Iran, Venezuela and all other such countries.


Comrades,


Together with standing in solidarity, we feel that each of us have to carry on the fight against imperialism within our own countries. It is right time for us to expose the bankruptcy of capitalist system and project a socialist alternative. The way socialist countries coped with the pandemic enhanced their prestige. Cuba, which faced a tough situation, stood out through its internationalism by sending its medical brigades. China contributed by sending one billion doses of its vaccines to Africa very recently, apart from the huge quantities of medical equipment it had supplied.


In Kerala, a province in our country, the CPI(M) led Left Democratic Front government stood apart from the rest of the country in tackling the pandemic. In spite of all the existing limitations of working within the capitalist system, our activities won the support of people and hence we were re-elected for a second consecutive time, a historic first in that province. It proves once again that the ruling classes can never succeed in defeating communism as long the Party is committed to Marxism-Leninism, both in theory and practice.


The CPI(M) feels that the present times might be some of the most difficult times, but they are also the most opportune. As communist and workers’ parties, we have to raise to the challenge, unite people against the present exploitative world order and fight for a socialist alternative. We are confident that it is only through unflinching class struggles led by a communist party that we can end this crisis-ridden capitalist system and usher in socialism. In this endeavour, all of us should stand together and march ahead.


Full statement: extraordinary-teleconference-imcwp-intervention.pdf


Lao People’s Revolutionary Party:


Over the past, the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (Lao PRP) has led the country’s revolutionary cause to fight against imperialist colonization, thus regaining genuine independence for the country and true freedom for the Lao people, and advanced the cause of national defense and development as well as further carried out the Comprehensive Renovation Policy based on the Party principles toward achieving socialism. Since 1986, the Lao PRP has been creative in leading the Renovation policy, which has been implemented in accordance with the country’s characteristics and realities, as well as the prevailing development and integration in regional and international contexts. As a result, the Lao PDR has been able to record tremendous achievements in an array of areas. The most predominant and fundamental successes are that the Lao PDR has been able to maintain firm political stability, security and social order. Its economy has enjoyed steady growth. People’s wellbeing has been gradually improved, and poverty has been reduced as planned.


On January 2021, the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party successfully convened its XIth National Congress. At the Congress, the new Party Central Committee was elected. And, Comrade Thongloun Sisoulith was unanimously elected as the Party General Secretary. Taking this opportunity, on behalf of the Lao PRP, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks and gratitude to the communist and workers’ parties, left-wing parties, progressive movements as well as all friendly political parties for extending their congratulatory messages to our Party Congress and the General Secretary.


The Congress adopted its resolutions and the Ninth Five Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan, which set major goals, targeted programs and priority projects to be realized with the aim to graduating the Lao PDR from the Least Developed Country status by 2026, and advancing the country status to a higher medium income nation by 2030, guided by green and sustainable development in order to build the Lao PDR a strong and prosperous country where people enjoy a wealthy and happy life, and society enjoys harmony, solidarity, democracy, justice and civilization.


Full statement: Extraordinary TeleConference of the IMCWP, Contribution of Lao PRP


Portuguese Communist Party:


Capitalism, its deepening structural crisis and its exploitative, oppressive, aggressive and predatory nature, the threats and dangers which it entails, its growing contradictions, its incapacity to provide answers for Humankind’s problems and aspirations, entail, with redoubled relevance, the timeliness and need for anti-monopolist and anti-imperialist transformations, for the development of revolutionary processes that indicate socialism as their goal, regardless of the phases and stages and of the forms that they will take on, taking into account the concrete situation in each country.


The revolutionary overcoming of capitalism and the construction of a new society, freed from exploitation, are a demand for today and for tomorrow.


Profoundly linked to the Portuguese workers and people, the PCP proceeds with confidence its struggle for a break with the right-wing policies, for a patriotic and left-wing alternative, for an advanced democracy with the values of the April [1974] Revolution, for Socialism


Full statement: Contribution-of-the-PCP-to-the-extraordinary-conference-of-the-IMCWP.pdf


Communist Party of Swaziland:


We welcome this chance to bring some points to your attention concerning the new phase of struggle in our country, Swaziland. The country was renamed Eswatini by the absolute monarch, but we retain the customary name of Swaziland.


This year saw a resurgence of demands for an end to the autocracy and the installation of a democratically elected dispensation. Swaziland is ruled by a royal autocracy. It is a dictatorship. Political parties calling for democratic change are banned. Those parties that are allowed are toothless show-pieces that are allowed to sit in parliament. And even if they call for any changes, as happened with a call by two MPs for the Prime Minister to be elected, they are immediately imprisoned.


There is no free media in Swaziland, no freedom of association. Cultural tradition centred on the absolute monarch is used to intimidate the people into abject compliance with royal diktat. Women especially suffer from this heavily repressive patriarchal system.


The resurgence of demands for democracy have largely come from the youth. Their protests have been heavily and bloodily suppressed with well over a hundred people shot dead by the army and police since June this year. Over 700 people are imprisoned without trial.


The political consciousness mobilising the protests is largely rooted in a simple desire for democratic rights. We, as the Communist party, have given much content to the campaign for democracy by placing it in the wider context of the struggle for socialism. Our slogan for the current campaign, Democracy Now!, has been widely adopted.


This is the basic overview of the situation. Time does not allow for a longer description.


But the situation is very directly related to imperialist machinations on the future of Swaziland. The United States, the European Union and even to some extent the regional organisations of governments in Africa (SADC, the AU) are trying to shape the situation in Swaziland to suit their own interests. They are not particularly interested in democracy, if it upsets their economic interests in the country. And that is a massive brake on the efforts to get rid of the dictatorship and begin a process of democratic change of progressive empowerment for our people. This is the current nature of imperialist interference in Swaziland.


Full statement: Extraordinary TeleConference of the IMCWP, Contribution of CP of Swaziland


Communist Party of Vietnam:


The Communist Party of Viet Nam advocates the consistent implementation of foreign policy line of independence, self-reliance, peace, friendship, cooperation and development, multilateralization and diversification of external relations. Viet Nam is a friend, a trusted partner, and an active and responsible member of the international community. The Communist Party of Viet Nam always promotes pure and noble internationalism, striving for making significant contributions to solidarity building among communist and workers' parties, preserving and consolidating solidarity in the movement. Today, we once again express our consistent support for the just struggles of the world's peoples, and call for greater international solidarity among the communist and workers' parties and among democratic, peace-loving and progressive forces in the world. The more difficult the situation is, the more we should help, unite, and work together to clarify the superiority of socialism.


On this occasion, once again the Communist Party of Viet Nam would like to thank the solidarity, support and valuable assistance of the working class, communist forces and progressive people around the world in Viet Nam’s struggle for national independence and unification in the past, as well as in current construction and defense of the Fatherland of the Communist Party of Viet Nam and its people.


Viet Nam's Renewal cause is entering an important stage. We believe that under the correct leadership of the Communist Party of Viet Nam, with the help and solidarity of communist and workers’ forces, and international friends, the aspiration for a prosperous, happy and socialist-oriented Viet Nam will soon become a reality.


Full statement: Extraordinary TeleConference of the IMCWP, Contribution of CP of Vietnam


All of the statements published so far can be found at: Solidnet | page




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