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MEETING TONIGHT 20 FEB: Australia must condemn United States sanctions and threats of military intervention in Venezuela

The next Meeting of IPAN in Victoria will be on 20 February, Level 4 Trades Hall at 5.30 pm. This meeting will commence earlier due to a small overlap with a meeting on Venezuela on the same night, at 7pm in the Trades Hall, at which the Venezuelan Consul will be speaking. IPAN meeting will be at 5.30pm – 7pm to enable people interested to learn more about the situation in Venezuela to attend.
Just when you thought all your co-citizens were asleep at the wheel on Australian Government support for America's latest regime change initiative, the Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) has issued a response. IPAN reminds us that this is not our decision, nor the USA's to make, but is a decision for the Venezuelan people. IPAN has made several recommendations, including that Australian needs to develop an independent foreign policy.

IPAN made the immediate points that:

 Venezuelans have the right to decide who governs them
 US sanctions on Venezuela are not endorsed by the UN
 UN diplomacy needed immediately for non-military resolution to the crisis
 Urgent need for an independent Australian foreign policy

The Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) has reported that it is deeply concerned with the Morrison government and ALP Opposition’s support for the United States call to remove the current rule of the Maduro government and the installing of the interim president Guaido in Venezuela. This is not our decision, nor the USA’s to make, but is a decision for the Venezuelan people.

“The position of the Australian government and opposition flies in the face of lessons from the recent, and not so recent, US led wars that Australia has supported and engaged in”. stated Ms Annette Brownlie, IPAN Chairperson.

What is required is an urgent diplomatic solution facilitated by the UN – not military intervention nor US sanctions that have not been endorsed by the UN.

“This situation also points to the urgent need for an independent Australian foreign policy that upholds and promotes the sovereignty and independence of our country and all other countries”, stated Ms Brownlie.

IPAN considers support for military or economic intervention would be counterproductive to resolving the crisis being experienced by the Venezuelan people.

Former UN special rapporteur to Venezuela, Alfred de Zayas, who finished his term last year has criticized the US for engaging in “economic warfare” against Venezuela which he said is hurting the economy and killing Venezuelans.

Mr de Zayas has argued that,

“The key to the solution of the crisis is dialogue and mediation… There is nothing more undemocratic than a coup d’état and nothing more corrosive to the rule of law and to international stability when foreign governments meddle in the internal affairs of other states.”

“Only the Venezuelans have a right to decide, not the United States, not the United Kingdom … We do not want a repetition of the Pinochet putsch in 1973. What is urgent is to help the Venezuelan people through international solidarity – genuine humanitarian aid and a lifting of the financial blockade so that Venezuela
can buy and sell like any other country in the world – the problems can be solved with good faith and common sense”.

Support IPAN

The next Meeting of IPAN in Victoria will be on 20 February, Level 4 Trades Hall at 5.30 pm. This meeting will commence earlier due to a small overlap with a meeting on Venezuela on the same night, at 7pm in the Trades Hall, at which the Venezuelan Consul will be speaking. IPAN meeting will be at 5.30pm – 7pm to enable people interested to learn more about the situation in Venezuela to attend.

National Conference in Darwin

The next conference of IPAN is planned for Darwin.

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REMINDER - IPAN-Victoria Meeting

Wednesday 27 March
6pm
Level 4,
Trades Hall, corner Lygon and Victoria Streets, Carlton
Cream building at the back of the main building
Entrance either via Victoria street or boom gates on Lygon street.
(if you get lost please phone 0417456001)

Main Agenda items so far -
4 July, America's Independence Day, Activities and Forum - US marines in Darwin and Australia's independence and sovereignty. Lead up to Darwin Conference
IPAN National Conference in Darwin 2-4 August
IPAN Lawyers' Working Group - Report from inaugural meeting
Peace and Justice are Union Business Working Group
Affiliates' Reports and Announcements