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European Strategy meeting in Amsterdam
by Sol Trumbo Vila
19 December 2013

A strategy meeting in Amsterdam became a critical milestone for the convergence of different European social movements on the frontlines of resistance against the neoliberal EU austerity regime.
TNI hosted in Amsterdam (4-6 October 2013) a European strategy meeting which brought together different European social movements on the frontlines of resistance against the neoliberal EU austerity regime.

Austerity, privatization and attacks on social rights, imposed by the European Commission, have become a reality for people across Europe. While there have been many impressive struggles at the national level - especially in Southern Europe - European coordination is still weak apart from sporadic days of joint action.

In recent years European social movements have organized numerous meetings to analyse the situation. However, it also became clear that European social movements required a common strategy. Following the results of the EU economic governance assembly organized in the Alter Summit in Greece (7-8 June 2013), the Amsterdam strategy meeting was called to coordinate European struggles against the Troika’s imposition of neoliberal policies under the new EU economic governance regime.

A European square

Coming from all over Europe, 60 organizations and networks [see complete list below] from well-established groups with a long history to the most recent social movements, gathered over three days in Amsterdam to share stories of successful resistance and to shape common campaigns and strategies.

There was a strong commitment to apply the lessons learned during the recent camps and occupations. The proposed agenda was modified along the lines of a general assembly, where all the participants had their say through an open and horizontal process. Different working groups were created to further develop the topics that were considered most important for the months to come: Democracy and the commons, Troika and Debt, the Competitiveness Pact, and the European elections.

As a result, four different initiatives were jointly developed at the end of the strategy meeting:

Troika Party: Under the slogan of “Democracy is not competitive”, this communication campaign organized around a fake political party will expose the role of the Troika in European decision making, and the real discourse behind the Troika policies.
Competitiveness Pact: This new piece of EU legislation under discussion is the new framework to push further austerity measures and weakening of labor laws. This campaign will not only oppose this pact but also will say “Basta!” to the principle of competing in a race to the bottom.
Mapping the alternatives: A newly created online directory will map all the European initiatives that are protecting the commons and developing solidarity economies. It will make them visible and demonstrate that there are real alternatives to neoliberal policies.
Week of action during the European elections: The European elections were identified as a key moment to mobilize European social movements against the neoliberal EU crisis regime. De-centralized but coordinated actions will be promoted all over Europe.

Encouraging a pan-European response

The following meetings provided important inputs and ideas to the Amsterdam gathering: the Alter Summit Assembly in Brussels (October 18-19), the Agora99 meeting in Rome (1-3 November) and the International Blockupy Conference in Frankfurt (22-24 November). From Transnational Institute we thank all those organisations, groups and activists that made this strategy meeting a success. We start 2014 strengthened and more coordinated, the European convergence of social movements is a fact. To join the EU in crisis network please write to: EUinCrisis [at] corporateeurope.org

Groups present at the event

Spain

Citizen Debt Audit Platform (PACD)
Mesa Defensa Sanidad Pública Madrid LA PAH (Platform of afected by mortgages)
Plataforma por un nuevo modelo energético (PX1NME)
Ecologistas en Accion Attac Spain

Portugal

Precários Inflexíveis Que se lixe a Troika

Greece

Greek debt audit campaign (ELE)
No Debt No Euro
Micrópolis
Thessaloniki People’s University of social and solidarity economy
Initiative of solidarity with VioMe occupied factory
Initiative 136 for social control of water

Germany

Attac Germany
Interventionistische Linke / Blockupy
Metal Workers Union Berlin
Blockupy
Rosa Luxembourg Foundation
European Occupy Central Bank

Netherlands

SOMO
Reinform Social Development Cooperative
International Migrant Platform
15M Amsterdam
Nijmegen Social Forum
Ander Europa
Social Development Cooperative

United Kingdom

Activist involved in Occupy London
Green Party London

Austria

Attac Austria

Ireland

Debt Justice Action
Attac Ireland
University College Dublin

Italy

Global Project

Slovenia

Peace Institute Ljubljana

Poland

Polish Anarchist Federation and Trade Union “The Workers Initiative”
ATTAC Poland

Belgium

Corporate European Observatory
CADTM
Centrale nationale des employés
Friends of the Earth Europe
GUE/NGL group in the EP

Finland

FoE Finland / Vasudhaiva kutumbakam network
Solidarity economy in Finland

Others

ICAN (International Citizen Audit Network)
Transform! Europe
Generation Alpha
EarthFirst!

Source: http://www.tni.org/article/video-uniting-struggles-against-european-neoliberalism


Sol Trumbo Vila

Investigador en el Transnational Institute (TNI) y activista en varias redes internacionales como la “Campaña global para desmantelar el poder corporativo y poner fin a la impunidad”