Whilst Civil Society gathers in Porto Alegre for the 3rd World Social Forum to debate alternatives to neoliberalism and economic globalisation, world finance "leaders" and CEO's of the main global corporations meet behind closed doors for this year's summit of the World Economic Forum in the Swiss city of Davos to further implement economic globalisation policies.
Update Jan 31st: WSF ends with brutal police repression. Police violently attacked protesters and bystanders on the last day of the World Social Forum. It started when a Mapuche woman who was attending the WSF was arrested with charges of "obscene acts" for bathing nude in a river. Activists saw this and organized over 400 people to protest by nonviolently taking their clothes off in solidarity. When the nude protest left the youth camp to march downtown the police attacked. After injuring and arresting some of the the nude protesters the police lashed out at journalists and bystanders. An unknown number of people were hospitalized or arrested as a result of the police assault.
The World Social Forum in Porto Alegre started on the 23th of January and will continue until January 28. The WSF presents itself as a space for diverse activities, workshops, debates and lectures about alternatives to the current economic and political state of affairs, as well as a space for the exchange of ideas, experiences and struggles.
The activities of this year's WSF began with a "March for the Peace against the Militarization and the War" [photo and report (bra). At the same time, and parallel to them main march, another anti-capitalist demonstration took part in the streets of Porto Alegre. Photo and reports 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
The workshops of January 24 included a "Conference against the militarization and the war", and a debate on "Communication for the exertment of the Citizenship". On the same day Greenpeace organised an anti-nuclear action against the installation of Angra III's Nuclear Plant in Rio De Janeiro.
January the 25th saw a conference of the People's Global Action as part of the event "Life After Capitalism" which debated issues of participatory democracy and notions of consuption and income. A meeting of the global network of Social Youth Movements also took place. At the same time different marches and demonstrations took place in the streets of the city.
For latest updates and reports in English see IMC-Brasil.
Hear daily Radio stream [offline now] from Porto Alegre.
For a full programme of events see the WSF website.
At the same time, in the Swiss city of Davos another type forum was taking place. The summit of the World Economic Forum (24-28 Jan) met in secretive talks whilst fences and hundreds or riot police [photos 1 | 2] protected the "global economic leaders" from up to 5000 anti-capitalist demonstrators that thook the streets of Davos and the nearby city of Fideris [photos 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 ].
On Sunday 26, people returning from the mountain city of Davos were met with hundreds of riot police in Bern and clashes ensued [photos].