Ramsar COP8 - Brief report and photos: Demonstrations

"Wetlands: water, life, and culture"
8th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties
to the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971)
Valencia, Spain, 18-26 November 2002

Peaceful demonstrations inside and outside of the venue

Demonstrations are something new for Ramsar. NGO participation in Convention processes over the past 30-odd years have usually been confined to solid policy work in committees, vast expert practical work on the ground, and earnest and heartfelt interventions at the COPs. At COP8, for the first time, a large number of peaceful demonstrations took place, both outside the venue and in the streets of Valencia and within the venue itself as well by NGOs accredited to participate.

. . . . Leading to some anomalous situations from time to time, for example, when WWF demonstrators were outside protesting against policy at the same time that WWF officers were inside participating as equals in crafting policy.

Naturally, the Spanish Hydrological Plan drew the largest numbers and most attention.


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