News / 18 June 2019

Open letter from more than 340 organisations: EU must stop negotiating treaty with South American countries.

Today, more than 340 organisations from both South America and Europe, including Both ENDS, have sent a joint open letter to European Union leaders calling for the EU to cease negotiations on the EU-Mercosur Free Trade Agreement. The organisations and their constituencies are seriously concerned about increasing violations of indigenous human rights and damage to nature and the environment in Brazil.

After 20 years of negotiations for a free trade agreement between the European Union and the Mercosur bloc (Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina) the process accelerated in 2018. Various civil society organisations and social movements in South America subsequently sounded the alarm and asked to stop the negotiations.

Dangers of the free trade agreement

In the letter that was sent (Spanish) and the statement that was issued (English) at that time, the organisations warned about the dangers of the trade agreement for the local population in the Mercosur countries, mainly due to the fact that the agro-export industry plays a large role the in the treaty, which will lead to more deforestation, pollution and violation of indigenous human rights.

Bolsonaro and increase in deforestation

Today, in 2019, it seems that the negotiations are in a closing phase. Meanwhile, the situation in Brazil, with President Bolsonaro, is drastically deteriorating. Since his government was installed, there is a huge increase in deforestation in the Amazon and of violent raids of Indigenous demarcated areas, while the authorities turn a blind eye.

Reconsider treaty

It is high time to sound the alarm again. The joint organisations hope that with the letter sent today, they will on the one hand receive support from the international community in the fight for fair and inclusive trade, and on the other hand persuade the EU to reconsider the EU-Mercosur free trade agreement and human rights and the environment.

More information:

The letter of 18 June 2019 (English)

The letter of February 2018 (Spanish)

The statement of February 2018 (English)



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