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Resolution on democratic movements

Resolution of the 2nd ICOR World Conference


The wave of protests in 2011 which came to be called the “Arab Spring” is still not at an end. It has now taken fierce forms igniting inter imperialist contradictions and raising the threat of divisions. In the Arab world, during the last two years governments have changed in Egypt (twice), Tunisia or Yemen as a result of mass upsurges. Democratic uprisings have erupted in Bahrain and Syria. Major protests have broken out in Algeria, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Morocco, and Sudan. This is not counting the massive protests in Turkey in 2013 and the upheaval in Mali.

It is not as if such protests have been restricted to the Islamic world. The massive protests at other places show how this is an all-pervading phenomenon.

At another level, there were protests in Bangladesh to protest against Islamic fundamentalism and in India against corruption and assaults on women during this period. Outbreaks have taken place in Brazil, Mauritania, Western Sahara, etc.

The common point of all these protests is that they raise a protest against corruption and for democracy. Almost in all these protests voices have been raised against corrupt practices, price rises, unemployment, etc. In almost all the protests, autocratic and undemocratic practices have been decried and the demand has been for greater democratic rights. In most of these protests, voices have been raised against capitalism and against imperialism. At the same time, it is clear that the main aim of these movements still is not to overthrow the capitalist system as a whole but at first to remove autocratic rulers and institutions.

At the same time, it is also a common feature of most of these movements that they have not yet resulted in any basic change in any country. In Nepal, where the autocratic rule could be overthrown in 2005, the situation has reached a watershed with the Congress party coming to power in 2013 and the communists being reduced to a minority. In countries like Egypt and Tunisia, the Islamic forces seized power and in Egypt they were replaced by an autocratic military rule once again.

All these movements signify that there is great discontent among the people. They seek a better life and more democratic systems in their countries. Imperialism has reached such a level that they are ready to come out into the streets to fight the effects of the neo-liberal policies .

It is the task of communists to be with the people in all such movements for democracy. In most of these movements the role of the left is very weak. We have to try and guide these movements away from bourgeois and sectarian alternatives and towards genuine people's democracy and socialism.

By now, reactionary, Islamist-fundamentalist and pro-imperialist forces themselves initiated reactionary mass movements under the false pretext of fighting for “freedom and democracy”, as was the case in Ukraine or in Thailand.

As the world-wide crisis of imperialism is bound to aggravate and as the imperialists are bound to thrust the burdens of this crisis upon the working class and other oppressed masses, both in the imperialist countries and in the neo-colonies, many more such movements for democracy and social justice, often developing into movements for the overthrow of the anti-people rulers and governments can be expected to erupt in various parts of the world. This situation calls for ICOR to play an active role in developing solidarity movements in support of them and in strengthening the class struggle in the own countries. The ICOR must play an especially active role in such movements providing them with material and moral support.

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