International Solidarity with the migrants of the world!
Saturday 6 August 2016 by Antoine
This statement was approved by the closing rally of the youth camp in solidarity with the Fourth International on 30th July in Cannoves, Catalonia in the Spanish state (for the other statements adopted see Stop the bombings and the sieges in Syria, support the Syrian people!).
For some years, the capitalist system has been going through one of the most important economic and political crises of its history.
In this crisis, the EU bourgeoisies are applying austerity measures to stay competitive. Throughout Europe in order to avoid social conflicts, they are encouraging racism by using it as a tactic to divide the working class, and distracting people away from their own policies of destroying social welfare. The crisis has permitted reactionary ideas and forces to grow, and the far right movements have managed to dominate public debate. The liberal right parties as well as Social Democrats react to this by integrating the demands and themes of the far right into their own programmes, which only seems to legitimize the positions of the far right in the consciousness of large parts of the population.
In order to stay in power during the crisis, imperialist countries are fighting increasingly destructive battles for control of resources, and existing and new markets to ensure and increase their profits. This creates regional instabilities, especially in the Middle East. On an international scale, this deeply changes the balance of forces between countries.
At the same time, this has caused an increase of military interventions in the area leading to a humanitarian crisis and the flight of millions of people. This is accompanied by an increase in the number of other migrants that are escaping everyday from all sorts of different oppressions.
The first type of oppression is the domination of the Global South by the Global North, creating abundant poverty and misery.
As a historical product of colonialism, a lot of countries are governed by dictators and violent regimes that persecute their people and force them to flee. As always, women and LGBTIQ* people live the greatest oppression. In some countries, the fact of being an LGBTIQ* person can be enough to be condemned to death. Around the world, women are threatened on a daily basis by assault, rape and murder; furthermore, in many areas the states do not offer any protective measures against these threats. This is why refugees are ready to risk their lives in hope of a better life. But upon arrival in the European countries, they are put into camps, harassed and persecuted. Furthermore, their situation and presence are used to justify military interventions.
On a European level, the EU institutions are being used to coordinate the different countries policies on immigration. In order to not destabilize the labour market, the EU institutions try to control immigration into the European countries. Immigrant workers have always been used as a cheap work force and an excuse to lower the salaries and attack working conditions of all workers. The creation of Frontex and the massive increase of its budget in the last years show that the refugee question has become one of their priorities: they militarize the borders, and try to criminalize the migrants especially in the border countries through which they enter the EU, like Greece, Hungary or Italy.
What to do
In some countries, despite the reactionary offensive, we have seen an important support from the population. Demonstrations have been organized and a lot of people have participated in charity movements.
The challenge is now to give a political dimension and go a step further than the humanitarian aspects. However, this is made difficult because of a paternal form of racism – seen by the treatment of migrants as inferiors in need of help – that is very widely spread in the support movement. This purely humanitarian vision leads to an economic advantage for the states as it gives them the opportunity to have people voluntarily do the states tasks for free.
On the contrary to this, we need to defend the space for migrants’ self-organization and self determination because it is the only way to allow them to emancipate themselves. This is even more important for women and LGBTIQ* people whose situation is made invisible in the consciousness of people, and within the debates and discourse. They are subjected to a segregation and isolation from the rest of the population. Often migrants are separately housed depending on their gender, creating a real problem for trans-people.
We need to spread our analysis and our answers to these problems. We need to convince people of the necessity to fight the right wing and all racist attacks. We need to fight against our own governments and their imperialism. We need to fight the state’s structural racism. These are our priorities.
In this situation there are some urgent demands that revolutionaries need to fight for:
We refuse the distinction between political and economic refugees. We have to affirm that migration is often the result of the catastrophic effects of the capitalist system.
The immediate regularization of all undocumented people.
The closure of all inhuman refugee camps, the disbandment of FrontEx, and the stop of all discriminating and violent policies against migrants. For example, the Dublin system.
The right for anyone, and especially migrants, to have access to decent housing, education, health care and a general satisfaction of basic needs.
A stop to all police violence and deportations.
The right to regroup all families.
The organization of an economic, medical and psychological support for all women.
All specific reasons that lead to women and LGBTIQ* people fleeing have to be accepted as reasons for receiving asylum.
These demands are a necessity, but they can’t really be effective if they are not part of a perspective to break with the capitalist system, and the building of an alternative society without exploitation and oppression. With this in mind we demand:
Open borders and self-determination for everyone on where and how to live and work. We demand humanitarian corridors to Europe, because not a single death in the Mediterranean Sea can be justified.
Increase the social rights and the working conditions of all workers. For example, by a massive reduction of daily working hours, and to allow everyone to work and live in better conditions without having to create a competition between migrants and locals.
We defend an ecological and social planning of the production system to be put under the control of workers, in order to stop the wars driven by the ever increasing need of resources by the capitalist productive system.
The 33rd Youth Camp of the Fourth International reaffirms our international solidarity with all migrants and our will to together destroy this racist, unfair and violent system to create a new alternative society without exploitation and oppression.