Joanne Dateransi from Bougainville was one of the speakers at a rally organised by LASNET at the State Library of Victoria as part of a worldwide day of protests against the ever-growing pernicious influence of multinational companies. She spoke chiefly about the history of mining giant Rio Tinto’s operations, and opposition to attempts by the company to resume mining. Other speakers included Jessica Harrison of GM Cropwatch, who focussed on Monsanto and especially the insidious spread of GM crops such as canola in Australia, Marisol Salinas of Friends of the Earth and LASNET, who presented anti-Coke campaigner Michael from Colombia, who as unable to attend in person, and Madeline Hudson from FoE’s Anti-Nuclear and Clean Energy (ACE) Campaign, who targetted the uranium mining programs of the world’s largest mining company, BHP Billiton. After the speeches at the State Library there was a move by some to the Melbourne headquarters of BHP Billiton, where passers-by were offered information leaflets from FoE, and some were able to watch attempts to clean up an accidental spill of lurid green ‘radioactive waste’.
Here is part of the callout from LASNET:
Rally: International Day Against Multinational Corporations
When: Thursday, 22nd July, 12midday – 1.30pm
Where: State Library, Melbourne
Corporations around the world act as a law unto their own. We see this
play out in our myriad struggles. Many people are continuing the fight
against the domination corporations exercise over peoples’ lives, and we
ask that you join us on this day to take a public stand against… the
devastation these amoral corporations are inflicting on us and other
Multinational Corporations act only to benefit the privileged few at the
expense of the majority; to reinforce exploitation of poor people, smash
unionism and undermine workers rights, terrorism and murder union
activists, displace and assimilating Indigenous communities, and trash our
natural resources and environment.
The well-documented crimes of corporations such as BHP, Rio Tinto, Barrick
Gold, Coca-Cola, Fonterra, Chiquita Brand, Monsanto, Drummond, Nestle, and
BP is hardly complete; nevertheless, will be a focus of LASNET in
illustrating the multitude of corporate crimes occurring globally, as the
Solidarity delegation visiting Colombia at the moment will do next
Thursday 22 with Colombian workers in Colombia, check a video about them
in our web on http://www.latinlasnet.org/node/371.
We acknowledge, and support, the proliferation of local struggles for
workers rights/community power, autonomy and self-management, for freedom
from corporate domination and devastation. We see this event as one of
many actions we will be undertaking, and we are currently in the process
of organising a ‘Latin American, Australian & Asia Pacific Solidarity
Gathering’ to occur on October 15-17, 2010 in Melbourne. We invite you to
both attend this rally on July 22 and further to assist us in the
organising of our October Gathering.
Facebook event here
If you love life, don’t drink Coca-Cola products!
At BHP Billiton headquarters:
Video in preparation.
23 July – video now available on EngageMedia: