World Social Forum 2007

 Anna Mitchel/OxfamSome 100,000 delegates from social movements, NGO’s, networks and coalitions from 140 countries are set to gather in Kenya. From 20-25 January, Nairobi hosts the seventh annual World Social Forum (WSF), where hundreds of discussions, mobilization events, demonstrations and festivals have been organized under the slogan “Another World is Possible.”

Oxfam International is present in this international platform, to promote economic justice, access to essential services and to continue to push governments to support an Arms Trade Treaty, to stem  the flood of irresponsible arms sales which fuels serious human rights abuses, confilct and poverty worldwide.

Campaigning for change

Taking place just before the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switerland, the WSF gathers people from social movements all over the world to talk about social justice and economic development. Oxfam will attend both of these events to stress to world leaders that social justice and development need to be addressed.

The WSF is also an excellent opportunity for Oxfam to work with its allies like the Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP) the world's biggest anti-poverty movement, which is closely monitoring the Gleneagles pledges to Africa on debt, trade and aid, and progress towards the realization of the UN Millennium Development Goals.

Lifting people out of poverty

Oxfam is focussing its advocacy efforts on several fronts, all geared to creating positive change for the world's poorest and most vulnerable people.

Control Arms – From conflict in the Middle East, to the streets of Brazil, to the fighting in the Demoractic Republic of Congo, irresponsible arms sales are costing a thousand lives every day. An overwhelming majority of world's governments voted for an Arms Trade Treaty, now they must build a strong Treaty.

Economic Justice – Trade between the European Union (EU) and African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) countries can lift people out of poverty, but only if it is governed by fair rules, which support farming and industry in developing countries. However, the proposed Economic Partnership Agreements (EPA's) are a serious threat to ACP countries' future development prospects. ACP countries must be allowed to develop trade with cooperation with neighboring countries before opening up their markets to rich countries.

Essential Services – Building strong public services in poor countries is the only way to make poverty history. While private initiatives and partnerships can play a role, only governments have the capacity to deliver on the scale required.

Governance – Oxfam will work with communities to ensure that more people exercise their political and civic responsibilities to demand better governance and public-service delivery in Africa. We will also work with the African Union and key African states to hold industrialzied counties publicly accountable for global reform promises including the GB Gleneagles commitments to double financing for development to the continent.

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