Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

If you’ve been waiting for the right time to support our work—that time is now.

Our mission is simple: To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good.

But without the support of our readers, this model does not work and we simply won’t survive. It’s that simple.
We must meet our Mid-Year Campaign goal but we need you now.

Please, support independent journalism today.

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

Image for Day of the Landless says "Reclaim or lands, reclaim our future!"

Over 100 global organizations issued a declaration to snub the "neoliberal restructuring of agriculture" that has devastated rural communities' rights and lands. (Image: @GRAIN_org/Twitter)

A 'Commitment to Reclaim Our Lands and Our Future': 100+ Groups Mark 'Day of the Landless'

In "the name of imperialist domination and plunder, local elite rule, and private profits," rural communities have been booted off their land and deprived of their livelihoods, the groups declare

Andrea Germanos

Over 100 global organizations declared Friday to be "Day of the Landless." They marked the occasion with a statement denouncing neoliberal plunder of the planet's natural resources and reaffirming marginalized rural communities' claims to land and food sovereignty.

The declaration is endorsed by over 100 international and national organizations including the Asian Peasant Coalition, Food Sovereignty in Action Europe, GRAIN, and Arab Group for the Protection of Nature, as well as the Farmworker Association of Florida and Zambia Social Forum.

"We see how massive infrastructure projects and agricultural 'development' programs, many funded through onerous foreign debt and investments, displace rural peoples from their lands, livelihoods, and cultures—all in the name of imperialist domination and plunder, local elite rule, and private profits," the groups wrote.

"The neoliberal restructuring of agriculture," added the coalition, has contributed to a situation in which the vast majority of the world’s agricultural land is in the hands of a wealthy few—despite the fact the vast majority of farms are held by small holders. It is these small farmers "who actually till and enrich the lands for generations."

In their zeal to pursue profits by snatching up ever more land for destructive plantations and mining operations, governments and corporate entities are carrying out "human rights atrocities" against small farmer advocates, the groups noted, referencing a catalog of documented killings, assaults, and threats. 

Despite this grim backdrop, however, the declaration is far from being just gloom-and-doom.

The groups shared "some of the stories of resistance" such as Brazilian campesinos occupying contested lands, and announced their intention to stand "with even greater resolve and determination to reclaim our lands and future."

"We mark the Day of the Landless to let the world recognize our legitimate demands for land to the tiller and genuine agrarian reform; for food sovereignty; and for people's rights and democracy," they stated.

"Today," they concluded, "we reaffirm our commitment to reclaim our lands and our future from the powerful forces that took them away."

The new statement coincides with the kickoff the "No Land, No Life!" campaign.

According to organizers PAN Asia Pacific (PANAP) and its partners, the goals of the campaign are to:

  • Highlight land and resource grabbing as human rights issues;
  • Identify and highlight specific struggles of local communities on land and resources;
  • Raise greater awareness on and generate broader support; and
  • Coordinate and reinforce the various national campaigns against land and resource grabbing.

To see more about the issue, watch the short film The Right to Resist Land Grabs from PANAP below:


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

"I'm sure this will be all over the corporate media, right?"
That’s what one longtime Common Dreams reader said yesterday after the newsroom reported on new research showing how corporate price gouging surged to a nearly 70-year high in 2021. While major broadcasters, newspapers, and other outlets continue to carry water for their corporate advertisers when they report on issues like inflation, economic inequality, and the climate emergency, our independence empowers us to provide you stories and perspectives that powerful interests don’t want you to have. But this independence is only possible because of support from readers like you. You make the difference. If our support dries up, so will we. Our crucial Mid-Year Campaign is now underway and we are in emergency mode to make sure we raise the necessary funds so that every day we can bring you the stories that corporate, for-profit outlets ignore and neglect. Please, if you can, support Common Dreams today.

 

'We Need Action': Biden, Democrats Urged to Protect Abortion Access in Post-Roe US

"The Supreme Court doesn't get the final say on abortion," Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Tina Smith wrote in a new op-ed.

Kenny Stancil ·


Motorist 'Tried to Murder' Abortion Rights Advocates at Iowa Protest, Witnesses Say

Although one witness said the driver went "out of his way" to hit pro-choice protestors in the street, Cedar Rapids police declined to make an arrest.

Kenny Stancil ·


'A Hate Crime': Oslo Pride Parade Canceled After Deadly Shooting at Gay Bar

A 42-year-old gunman has been charged with terrorism following what Norway's prime minister called a "terrible and deeply shocking attack on innocent people."

Kenny Stancil ·


'We WILL Fight Back': Outrage, Resolve as Protests Erupt Against SCOTUS Abortion Ruling

Demonstrators took to the streets Friday to defiantly denounce the Supreme Court's right-wing supermajority after it rescinded a constitutional right for the first time in U.S. history.

Brett Wilkins ·


80+ US Prosecutors Vow Not to Be Part of Criminalizing Abortion Care

"Criminalizing and prosecuting individuals who seek or provide abortion care makes a mockery of justice," says a joint statement signed by 84 elected attorneys. "Prosecutors should not be part of that."

Kenny Stancil ·

Common Dreams Logo