International League of Peoples’ Struggle
17-19 October 2023
The International Coordinating Committee (ICC) of the International League for Peoples’ Struggle (ILPS) held its meeting on October 17-19, 2023 in Utrecht, the Netherlands. The ICC meeting also enabled the virtual participation of ICC members who could not attend in person.
The following officers participated in the three-day meeting: Len Cooper (Chairperson), Azra Talat Sayeed (Vice-Chair), Victor Garces (Vice Chair for Internal Affairs), Malcolm Guy (Vice Chair for External Affairs), Liza Maza (General Secretary), Nilufer Koc (representing Erdelan Hakan as First Deputy General Secretary), Samuel Villatoro Second Deputy General Secretary, Veerle Verschueren (Treasurer) Cody Urban (Auditor), Sarojeni Rengam (Vice Chair for Asia-Pacific), Yasmin Ahmed (representing Alessio Arena, Vice Chair for Europe), and Raphael Chiposwa (Vice Chair for Africa).
The following ICC regular members also participated: Helda Khasmy, Aaron Ceredoy, Renato Reyes, Rafael Mariano, Razan Zuayter, Bernadette Elorin, and Alberto Ruiz. Alternate ICC members Nahendra Khadka and Jane Brock were also present. Coordinators Rhonda Ramiro (US) participated along with Julia Marcelo (Latin America and the Caribbean) who provided Spanish translation.
ILPS Chair Len Cooper presided over the meeting and laid down the agenda. The list of items for discussion includes reports from the officers, regional chapters, and the 7th International Assembly (IA) Organizing Committee. The ICC members also reviewed the campaign plans of the League.
7th IA discussions & decisions made
ILPS General Secretary Liza Maza presented the report on the preparations for the 7th International Assembly Organizing Committee. During the meeting, ICC members deliberated on the 7th IA program and suggested keynote and plenary speakers. Additionally, the Proposed Rules of Participation for the 7th IA, concerns related to the Commissions, and other substantive issues were discussed. The meeting also addressed and approved specific plans for mobilization, publicity, visual branding, fundraising, and resource generation for the 7th IA.
Reports of Officers
The body discussed the reports of ILPS officers, encompassing their work from 2019 to 2023. ILPS Chairperson Len Cooper shared his report, outlining the actions undertaken on behalf of the League. These actions included representing ILPS in local and global activities by providing written and video, commemorative, and solidarity statements on issues, campaigns, and support for ILPS member organizations assemblies.
Cooper also extended his congratulations to the International Coordinating Group (ICG), the ICC, ILPS grassroots members, and partners for their significant efforts in resisting imperialist aggression, exploitation, and war. He paid tribute to ILPS Chairperson Emeritus Prof. Joma Sison, emphasizing the value of the ILPS campaign, the JMS Study Movement, in honoring his legacy.
ILPS Vice Chairperson Azra Sayeed provided an overview of her work where she represented the League in various campaigns, events, workshops, and actions, with a focus on expanding ILPS membership. This included participating in climate marches, and rural caravans, contributing to feminist courses, speaking in ILPS webinars, and identifying potential new members.
Malcolm Guy, ILPS Vice Chairperson for External, presented his report, emphasizing the development and strengthening of country/territorial chapters in the Africa and West Asia region in collaboration with Regional Vice Chairperson Raphael Chiposwa. Guy reported on efforts to rebuild ILPS Senegal, as well as the progress made in Tunisia, Palestine, Ethiopia, Morocco, and Iraq.
The Vice Chairperson for External also reported the successful launch of the ILPS Podcast and the ongoing work on the translation and interpretation services between comrades in francophone and anglophone Africa. A newsletter special issue dedicated to the late Chairperson Emeritus Jose Maria Sison was successfully released with support from the ILPS General Secretariat. A feature documentary film to honor Ka Joma’s memory is also in the works.
ILPS Vice Chairperson for Internal, Victor Graces, presented his report on the state of the League’s organizational work, with a focus on challenges faced by regional bodies, exacerbated by the pandemic. However, it was reported that ILPS leveraged campaigns to revitalize chapters and commissions. Ongoing efforts are underway to organize assemblies in country chapters while regional work in Africa is making progress in setting up chapters and reaching out to new members.
ILPS General Secretary Liza Maza provided a report on the activities and work of the General Secretariat. The office actively monitored and developed multimedia content to extend the reach of statements and other releases from the office of the Chairperson, and the commissions alongside global, regional, and country efforts. Maza also reported on the global solidarity campaigns, and campaigns/engagements co-organized with allied networks, as well as support for peoples’ struggles worldwide. The current composition of the Secretariat was also presented, which currently consists of three main staff members and one volunteer.
The General Secretariat’s work also covered media work on pressing international issues and reported local and global media coverage of ILPS positions and actions. Additionally, the office collaborated to produce ILPS podcast episodes, special newsletters, and ILPS video “Inter Views” episodes.
ILPS Treasurer Veerle Verschueren presented the financial report covering the period from January 2023 to September 30, 2023. It was noted that there are chapters that have already submitted their membership dues while member organizations are in the process of remitting. The ILPS Treasurer anticipates sending out invoices by December, once all necessary compliance requirements are met. Additionally, the Treasurer is actively coordinating financial matters for the upcoming 7th IA.
ICC members, regional coordinators, and chapters also presented their reports. The ILPS Africa/West Asia reported their work and their plans to prepare for the 7th IA. The regional chapter initiated face-to-face committee meetings, networking with organizations, and recruitment of new ILPS members. Discussion of the report revolved around emerging challenges in the region and proposed campaigns and activities.
ILPS Asia-Pacific reported on the post-pandemic economic challenges in Asia and the Pacific and the ongoing tensions between imperialist powers US and China. The regional chapter’s efforts included sign-on statements, releases, and webinars on G7, APEC, and militarization. Country chapters in the region worked on expanding League membership through various activities and orientations.
The ILPS Canada report outlined the country’s economic challenges and the growing awareness of Canada’s role in global imperialism. Work on collaborations with movements, anti-war, and solidarity groups was presented. The report also highlighted the state of ILPS member organizations in Canada alongside campaigns and planned actions by the chapter.
ILPS US reported on its active member organizations and membership growth. Regular meetings addressed membership, finance, propaganda, and education. The chapter has three active regional formations and three more in development, with a successful recent US-wide national assembly. Key political campaigns focus on anti-fascism, anti-imperialism, and solidarity to expand membership.
ILPS Europe presented their report on their chapters and highlighted their work on anti-NATO events and countering the EU-LAC economic treaty. They collaborated with 6 member organizations in the Netherlands, and Belgium, and formed alliances with Latin American organizations in Paris. Also reported is a rise in repression, leading to the banning of some member organizations.
The Latin America and the Caribbean Regional report highlighted its activities, including medical missions, public forums, and meetings, and released solidarity messages. The status of chapters in Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Colombia, and Bolivia was presented and discussed. The report also provided a concise overview of the challenges and future plans.
While challenges remain for some chapters, the reports showcased the active, vigorous, and vibrant work of the League and its members as a part of the growing people’s resistance in the face of the intensifying crisis of imperialism. The ICC regular members then adopted all reports.
On the Ongoing Campaigns
The body reviewed, discussed, and approved plans regarding the League’s current campaigns. On the situation in Palestine, the ICC decided to intensify ILPS’ campaign for the Palestinian struggle. This involves action points such as releasing statements, organizing educational sessions, and sustaining pro-Palestine actions worldwide.
The ICC also addressed ongoing country-focused anti-fascist campaigns. The global solidarity campaign for Pakistan will address local fascism and issues related to debt, land-grabbing, and the crisis in the dairy and livestock sector. A dedicated solidarity campaign for West Africa will be coordinated among member organizations, along with initiating a Western Sahara situationer. On Kurdistan, the solidarity campaign continues, with a recent globally coordinated press conference, and efforts are being made to garner support for the Kurdish movement’s call to release Abdullah Öcalan.
On the Global People’s Caravan (GPC) and climate imperialism campaigns, the body discussed the current work and tasks for the upcoming COP28. The ICC emphasized the need to strengthen the People’s Rising for Climate Justice (PRCJ) as a broad platform that amplifies the perspective of working peoples while linking and raising it to imperialism.
Updates on the campaign to combat the exploitation of workers and working people were also discussed. This included work on G7, the WTO, ongoing efforts in the APEC campaign, and other issues related to the neoliberal assault on the labor sector.
In the year-long tribute to Chairperson Emeritus Jose Maria Sison, the Secretariat, and PRISMM have collaborated on an ongoing study campaign regarding JMS’s contributions, which includes webinars and dissemination of reading lists.
An event commemorating the 175th anniversary of the Communist Manifesto is in progress, organized by PRISMM with the support of the General Secretariat.
The ICC has also approved the proposed resolution (see below or the link to the resolution) in which the ILPS ICC declares its support for the people of Chiapas in Mexico, who are under serious threat from criminal organizations and US army officers.
The ICC approved the nomination of Yasmin Ahmed as Vice Chairperson for Europe replacing Alessio Arena.