Nonviolent Livelihood Struggle and Global Militarism: Links & Strategies - International Conference, Ahmedabad, India, 22 - 25 of January 2010


There remains space for participants at the conference to propose new workshops

16.00 - Day 1: Opening Session

  • Welcome from Sudershan Iyengar, vice-chancellor of Gujarat Vidyapith
  • Speakers: Arundhati Roy and Ashish Nandy
  • Towards a participatory conference:
    a) Here is the News:
    * Audiovisual Message from WRI activists on the Free Gaza March
    * Introduction to "newspaper theatre" and example/s
    b) Introductory exercises between participants

Day 2: Displacement, 'Development' and Militarism

09.30: Morning session
a)Here is the News - 10 minutes
b)Introduction to the "Reflectors" - 5 minutes

Mining - threat to community, fuel for war
Speaker: Samarendra Das on mining in Orissa
Commentator: Elavie Ndura from Burundi/USA

14.30: Afternoon workshops


  • Mining fuel for war (following up morning session): Samarendra Das, Felix Padel and Mines, Minerals & People
  • Displacement and indigenous communities: Firu of Rompiendo Filas on Mapuches in Chile, Nandini Oza & Shripad Dharmadhikari of Save Narmada Movement in India and Rosa Moiwend of West Papua
  • Displacement of people and land issues due to wars and local people's struggle: Saibou Issa of Cameroon
  • Military bases and displacement: Wilbert van der Zeijden Coordinator of No Bases Network, Xavier Leon of the campaign against the Manta base in Ecuador, Park Kyung Soo on resistances to military bases in South Korea, Alain Ah-Vee of LALIT in Mauritius, Ulrike Laubenthal and Hans-Peter Laubenthal of the campaign against Bombodrom in Germany, Peter Jones and military bases in the pacific
  • Violence against Regional Identities (Jammu & Kashmir, North East of India.): Abdul Quadir Dar of Peoples Rights Movemment in Kashmir
  • Military recruitment: exploiting the vulnerable: Andreas Speck
  • “What does the War on Terror mean for social movements”: Jorgen Johansen
  • Women and development-induced displacement: Bela Bhatia India and Adriana Castaño Colombia
  • Military spending versus Sustainable peace with a special focus on South Asia: Yeshua Moser-Puangsuwan
  • Disarmament - small arms and armed rebel groups: Subhash Kattel South Asia Peace Alliance in Nepal, Boro Kitanoski Peace Action in Macedonia and Gunvant Govindjee of the Cease Fire Campaign in South Africa

Day 3: Nonviolent resistance from local communities

9.30: Morning session
a) Here is the News - 10 minutes
b) Reflectors - 25 minutes (5 x 5 mins)

Nonviolent struggles for land
Speaker: Maguiorina Balbuena - CONAMURI/Via Campesina Paraguay
Commentator: P.V. Rajagopal from the Indian landless movement Ekta Parishad

14.30: Afternoon workshops


  • India – the struggle for land rights (following up morning session): P.V. Rajagopal
  • Militarism and energy development projects in Latin America: Rafael Uzcategui (Venezuela), Silvana Lafuente (Bolivia), Firu (Chile), Pelao Carvallo (Chile/Paraguay) and Xavier Leon (Ecuador)
  • Constructive work and sustainable living as nonviolent resistance focus: food sovereignty Kapil (jatan trust) and Karuna (Samvad)
  • Another development vs. overdevelopment: Mozda Collective
  • NATO - Resistance to a globalising NATO: Andreas Speck (WRI) and Carlos Barranco (AA-MOC in the state of Spain)
  • Peace issues in Western and Central Africa: Saibou Issa
  • Resisting Zionism: nv resistance in Palestine and war resistance in Israel: Hitham Kayali and Sergeiy Sandler of New Profile in Israel
  • Gandhian Guides for Action: Michael Sonnleitner and Gujarat Vidyapith Peace Research Department
  • Towards nonviolent livelihoods: class, peace and conversion: Milan Rai
  • The essence of a strategic perspective on nonviolent struggle: Vanessa Ortiz of the International Center on Nonviolent Conflict (ICNC) and Cynthia Boaz (ICNC).

Day 4: Forming transnational alliances

9.30 - Morning session
a) Here is the News - 10 minutes
b) Reflections on Day 3 - 25 minutes (5 x 5)

Building transnational alliances
Speaker: Medha Patkar of the Narmada Bachao Andolan


  • Transnational campaigning against war profiteering – making links with the arms trade movement (ENAAT) and the local communities: Wendela de Vries of the Campaign Against Arms Trade in the Netherland
  • The role of nonviolent accompaniment in supporting the return of displaced communities: Christine Schweitzer and Eric Bachman
  • Nationalism and the anti fascist movement: Olga Miryasova of Russia, Helena Rill of Serbia and Boro Kitanoski of Macedonia
  • India as a nuclear military power and war profiteer – Uma (Sanghamitra Desai Gadekar) and Surendra Gadekar
  • Open source as an example of transnational cooperation: Michael Mazgaonkar and Andreas Speck
  • Law and activism: Stellan Vinthagen
  • Resources for Nonviolent Change: Vanessa Ortiz (ICNC), Cynthia Boaz (ICNC), Howard Clark and Joanne Sheehan

Closing plenary

  • chaired by Dominique Saillard
  • Narayan Desai, Institute for Total Revolution, Chancellor of Gujarat Vidyapith, and former chairperson of WRI
  • The Five Reflectors
  • Local host: Anand Mazgaonkar
  • That was the News
  • Chairperson of WRI: Howard Clark

As a final participatory activity, Narayan Desai will write an appropriate text connected to the topic of the conference for a Garba (Gujarati folk dance) that is easy to learn and where everybody can join in.

Programmes & Projects

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