From Lima to Madrid

18 November 2009 - Event
18 November 2009


Brid Brennan, Gonzalo Berrón

Organised by


Interpretation English-Spanish available

Organiser: GUE/NGL
In colaboration with: Europe-Latin America and the Caribbean Bi-regional network Enlazando Alternativas, Hemispheric Social Alliance, Permanent People's Tribunal, Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, Isvara Foundation

In the Hearing at the European Parliament, an overview of the main human rights violations of European transnational corporations in LAC will be presented as well as the role of European policies and institutions in the creation of a legal-judicial framework that allows transnational  corporations to act with impunity. Furthermore, the Hearing will address the inadequacy of the current voluntary approaches represented by the UN Global Compact and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in regulating the power of TNCs. The Hearing will conclude with Proposals for new initiatives and institutions in the EU and urge the development of a binding international normative framework and the setting up of an International Tribunal with binding authority to judge economic and environmental criimes, to which affected communities and individuals can turn as legitimate plaintiffs.

In this event, the experience of the Permanent People’s Tribunal and the analyses resulting from this experience will be presented. There will also be a debate on proposals on alternatives that have been elaborated from social movements’ perspectives.

During the Hearing, a delegation of 40 representatives from social movements and civil society organisations from Latin America will be present. The delegation is formed from representatives from the following sectors: trade unions, indigenous movements, environmentalists, women networks, Human Rights defenders and communities affected European transnational corporations from the regions of Mercosur, Andean Region and Central America.

Organisations represented

From Latin America: Confederación Nacional de Comunidades Afectadas por la Minería -CONACAMI, Perú; Centro de Documentación e Información de Bolivia -CEDIB, Bolivia; ATTAC Argentina, Argentina; Red Internacional de Genero y Comercio; Red Mexicana de Acción Frente al Libre Comercio-RMALC, México; Centro de Políticas Públicas para el Socialismo – CEPPAS, Argentina; Colectivo Alvear Restrepo, Colombia; Jubilee South Americas; Instituto de Políticas Alternativas para o Cone Sul –PACS, Brazil; Mesa Global, Guatemala; Ecuador Decide, Ecuador; Coordinadora de Integración de Organizaciones Económicas Campesinas de Bolivia –CIOEC, Bolivia; Universidad ARCIS - Chile; AAPP, Brazil; Fisherfolks Movement, Brazil; Trade Union Confederation of the Americas–TUCA; Movimiento Social Nicaragüense Otro Mundo es Posible, Nicaragua; Red Brasilera por la Integración de los Pueblos – REBRIP, Brazil; Movimento dos Sem Terra –MST, Brazil; Central General de Trabajadores del Perú, Perú; Amigos de la Tierra, Costa Rica; Coordinadora Andina de Organizaciones Indígenas, Perú; REDES Amigos de la Tierra, Uruguay.

From Europe: FDCL, Germany; Permanent People's Tribunal, Italy; Universidad del País Vasco, Spain;  ODG, Spain; Transnational Institute, Netherlands; FAL, France; Ecologistas en Acción, Spain; OMAL, Spain; Refondiazione, Italy; Corporate Europe Observatory –CEO, Belgium; CNCD/CIFCA, Belgium; Espace Marx, France and others. 

Registration is compulsory to enter the European Parliament. Please send: Name, Last Name and Date of Birth before Wednesday 11 November to


15:00    Opening remarks
Lothar Bisky, President GUE/NGL
Francois Houtart, President of the Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal Session in Lima
Gonzalo Berron, Hemispheric Social Alliance/ Enlazando Alternativas
Brid Brennan, Transnational Institute (TNI)/Enlazando Alternativas

15:15    Session 1: Testimony on Human Rights violations of European Transnational Corporations in strategic sectors of the Latin America and the Caribbean economy
Moderator: Gabi Zimmer, MEP

The case of Syngenta (Mercosur) - presented by Ariovaldo de Oliveira, Landless Movement (MST), Brazil

The Case of Unión Fenosa (Central America) - presented by Dolores Jarquin, Social Movement Nicaragua “Another World is Possible”, Nicaragua

The case of Majaz Mining in the Andean Region - presented by Mario Palacios, CONACAMI, Peru

The case of Thyssen in Brazil - presented by Luis Carlos da Silva Oliveira, Thyssen Campaign 

MEP response: Thijs Beerman (tbc)

16:30    Session 2: Legal-juridical framework which creates the architecture in which the Transnational Corporations act with impunity
Moderator: Ilda Figueiredo, MEP

Global Europe, Free Trade Agreements and Bi-Lateral Investment Treaties (BITs) - presented by Sebastián Valdomir, REDES-Friends of the Earth, Uruguay

Instruments of EU Complictiy - David Llistar, Observatory  Debt & Globalisation

World Bank and International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) - presented by Pablo Villegas of CEDIB, Bolivia

MEP Response: Barbara Lochbihler (tbc)

17:15    Session 3: Proposal new binding international normative framework to end impunity of TNCs and redress the unjust asymmetries in EU-LAC relations
Moderator: Joe Higgins, MEP

Proposals developed in the Peoples' Permanent Tribunal - presented by Gianni Tognoni, General Secretary, Permanent Peoples’ Tribunal

Proposals developed in Enlazando Alternativas - presented by Juan Hernandez, Professor University País Vasco -UPV-EHU

17:50    Closing Session: Preparing the Peoples Summit Madrid, May 2010
Moderator: Willy Meyer, MEP

Pedro Ramiro, OMAL, Spanish Organising Committee
Fran Pérez -OSPAAAL
Carlos Alberto Ruiz - MUNDUBAT (tbc)
Carlos Martínez - ATTAC
Enrique Daza, HSA, Hemispheric Social Alliance
Anna Camposampiero, Rifondazione, Enlazando Alternativas