The 22nd International Meeting of Communist and Workers Parties has been held in Havana, Cuba.
The Workers Party was represented by our International Secretary, Gerry Grainger, and Eoin McNeill of the party’s International Department.
More than 160 delegates from over 60 countries convened under the slogan ‘United we are stronger’ to discuss a range of international issues including the threats posed by the arms race, the large cuts to social spending which result from it and the existence and modernisation of nuclear weapons. The meeting also warned against the growing number of foreign military bases and NATO’s project to become a global military organisation.
The struggles of young people, women and those fleeing war zones and persecution were highlighted as was the ongoing dangers to our environment, ecosystem and to the human species by a capitalist economic system driven by profit , over production and the ruthless and damaging exploitation of natural resources.
With the gathering being held in Havana it was an appropriate opportunity to extend international solidarity to the Cuban people and “… their struggle for the immediate and unconditional lifting of the unjust, criminal and tightened economic, commercial and financial blockade to which they have been subjected for more than 60 years and demands that the US government removes Cuba from the spurious ‘State Sponsors of Terrorism’ list.“
Addressing the meeting on behalf of the Workers Party, International Secretary, Gerry Grainger spoke of the war in Ukraine and of the ”…serious danger of a more generalised military confrontation given the clamour for escalation by the EU, NATO and the US’
Turning to matters at home he said, “Thousands of people in Ireland are living in poverty and many of those are the so-called “working poor” unable to live and feed their families although in employment. Women, in particular, often have to work in low-paid precarious jobs. Single parents, predominantly women, face some of the highest childcare costs in Europe.
“Our society is characterised by massive and pervasive social and economic inequality, exploitation and oppression, with massive inequality in wealth between the working class and those who own and control society’s economic resources”, he said.
“Housing, health, education and social services are under attack. Work is low paid, precarious and casualised. Wages are in decline. The cost-of-living crisis continues to escalate. The gains and achievements fought for and attained by workers over generations are being undermined and reversed”, Gerry concluded