La Vía Campesina (LVC) will hold an International Solidarity Mission in Venezuela from 20-27 January, with the aim of showing the everyday life of Venezuelan people suffering from the impacts of the US blockade, and how they are facing this with creativity, solidarity and resistance. The Ezequiel Zamora National Peasant Front (FNCEZ) of the Bolivar and Zamora Revolutionary Current will host the Mission, which will include LVC members from South, Central and North America, and Europe. Real World Radio will be doing special coverage of the Mission.
“It is very important that the mission participants get to know ‘firsthand’ the impacts and effects of the blockade imposed by the US, but also the aspects which propel us to carry on and fight all these battles: the solidarity, resistance and capacity of peoples’ organizations in the face of crisis,” said Zuleima Vergel, member of FNCEZ, in interview with Real World Radio.
Through exchanging with local people and learning about different types of organization, production and political experience, “people will be able to better understand what is happening today in Venezuela,” added Vergel. In addition to the coup d´Etat attempt in 2019, Vergel made reference to several difficulties and impacts of the US blockade for the Venezuelan people. These include limited access to medicines, especially for chronic diseases, decrease in production capacity, and decline in quality of life.
“The US plan is to demoralize us.” One of the members of the Political Coordination group of La Via Campesina South America, Nury Martínez, explained how important it is for LVC members from all the regions, especially Africa, Asia and Europe, to receive alternative information about what is happening in Venezuela. They can then spread this information—which is different from what is seen in mainstream media—at the international level to raise awareness of the North American offensive in Venezuela.
During the Mission, “we aim to learn about the role of peasants, popular resistance and its relationship with institutions, which is much more important than what is shown. Defended by the Venezuelan people, it is because of this that the government has remained in power,” said Nury Martínez (CLOC – LVC South America).
One of the main solidarity actions carried out by FNCEZ and other peasant movements has been to coordinate with small farmers to ensure food supply for the entire territory. For this they have been attacked by criminal groups, such as when six members of the Hugo Chávez Popular Defense Brigade were murdered in Sucre municipality, Barinas, last July. Vergel explained that, after the Mission, they hope to submit a report to the International Coordination of La Via Campesina about the need to build concrete support for the people of Venezuela at the international level.