Subject: [fem-women2000 696] FWD: WCAR: Voices of Youth?
From: Makoto TERANAKA <email@example.com>
Date: Mon, 03 Sep 2001 19:12:25 +0900
Forward to firstname.lastname@example.org. ------------------------------------------------- Date: Sat, 01 Sep 2001 16:16:42 +0800 >From: Kathy Clarin <email@example.com> Subject: WCAR Update 12 from Isis International-Manila Voices of Youth? The plenary session of the Youth Forum on racism put forward an ambitious declaration covering issues from the social impact of environmental destruction to discrimination against women and the poor. But vocal sections of the youth were dissatisfied with the proceedings. The major flashpoint was Palestine. The most fractious debate took place on the wording of the agreement in the committee discussing foreign occupation. The arguments spilled over into the main hall, out into the corridors, and back to the secretariat, which frankly admitted there were issues it was "finding difficult to overcome", as Jewish delegates walked out of the session. But it wasn't just the obvious issues that worried the youths attending the conference. All those I spoke to were annoyed about the aging youths arrogating to their conference. Three of the youngest members of the forum went on stage to state the problem. Seventeen-year-old Dezroy Bobb suggested an age-limit be set, clarifying exactly how old a young person can be. They were also concerned about marginalised communities who were not able to be present at the forum. Ntsiki Mbambo, a Durbanite, pointed out that not much emphasis was given on the HIV/ AIDS issue, confident that rural South Africans would have placed this on the top of the health agenda. But the main problem, echoed in the next day's NGO Forum, was translation. In the working committee groups, language difficulties meant the programmes stretched hours over time. Some groups were unable to finalise their drafts, and insisted that the final document could not be presented as a complete paper. All the participants were aware of the need to take the issues discussed here beyond the 700 delegates priviliged enough to make it to Durban. So a proposal was put forward to make this the start of an international grassroots network. Presenting this vision at the opening ceremony of the NGO conference, a youth spokesman declared that this would not be a project confined to Internet mailings, excluding the millions unable to access the Web. It would be working groups within each country, spreading the ideas and plans discussed over two days here in Durban. On her hopes for the network, Lalaine P Viado from the Philippines, said, "We have to focus mainly on the substance, which is identifying the causes of races, and then, we don't stop there, we have to move forward from there and look at the whole problem of how racism is being reproduced." The final plenary session of the Youth Forum had a pronounced anti-American slant. Proposals on Tibet raised barely a murmur of approval, while proposals on Puerto Rico, reparations for slavery and the economic colonisation of Latin America were all greeted with roars of applause. A consensus could not be reached on some issues, principally regarding the Israeli demands. Nevertheless, the youth groups who took part in the forum seemed optimistic at the close of the session. Unfortunately this enthusiasm was further damped by problems when the finalised document came out. The initial discussion on the document was postponed, as the document was only available in English. The second was postponed as they hadn't had time to distribute the French and Spanish translations. I asked one young, previously enthusiastic, Australian when the third was going to be. She didn't know and didn't care. _________________________________________________________________________ fem-Women2000@jca.apc.org for Women 2000, UN Special Session on Beijing+5 Searcheable Archive http://www.jca.apc.org/fem/news/women2000/index.shtml visit fem-net HomePage for other mailing lists http://www.jca.apc.org/fem