International Workers Association (IWA/AIT/IAA) Plenary in Bogota

IWA Plenary in Bogota

On June 29-30, over 60 delegates and observers from the IWA participated in the Plenary which took place in Bogota, Colombia. We were also joined on line by Chinese anarcho-syndicalists who were invited to observe the meeting. We thank ULET, our Section in Colombia, for the tremendous effort in organizing the Plenary and for their very warm hospitality.

Prior to the Plenary there was a public discussion with members of CNT-AIT Spain, ZSP from Poland and ULET from Colombia. The Plenary was also accompanied by a number of cultural events.

The Plenary dealt with many internal matters such as procedures and dealing with good practices but also decided to organize some actions and campaigns. There will be a new, long-term campaign against wage theft, in addition to the Week Against Unpaid Wages that we have held over the past few years. Next year there will be an IWA Week of Action in May where the Sections and Friends can organize a wide variety of activities.

There were many discussions, including about the need for training on communications security for all comrades and about safety concerns for comrades who live in places with especially repressive regimes. As the IWA expands and make contacts around the globe in new areas, this is an especially important issue.

A final issue of note was the report from CNT-AIT Spain updating us on the lawsuits brought against them by the Spanish union from CIT, the organization which unsuccessfully tried to take over the IWA and disenfranchise many member organizations and later formed another international federation. That organization is suing numerous unions of CNT-AIT for amounts close to one million euros, in an attempt to bankrupt the CNT-AIT and destroy this anarcho-syndicalist tradition in Spain. Among the claims in the lawsuits is that workers want to join so called “CNT”-CIT, but join the CNT-AIT “by accident”, which would be very funny if it wasn’t such an insulting thing to say about the comrades of the CNT-AIT and workers in general. As if our comrades from the CNT-AIT don’t know which organization they are joining and why. They claim that the CNT-AIT prevents them from growing, which is maybe more a comment on the fact that the CNT-AIT is growing and perhaps “CNT”-CIT, not as much as they thought they would. Finally, they claim that the CNT-AIT cannot be called CNT-AIT because the IWA itself does not exist. This of course was very amusing for the comrades of the IWA, except the reality isn’t funny at all.

The suits will be in court in the middle of September and we stressed the need to show our solidarity with CNT-AIT from their “non-existent” comrades against the vindictive outrages inflicted on them by the founders of the compromised “CNT”-CIT, so far from the historical libertarian positions of CNT-AIT.

We thank everyone who participated in the very intensive work of the Plenary and especially our hosts.

Long Live the IWA!

General Secretary IWA


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