Churches' Summit Showing Termed `Weak': Quebec Protestors Disgruntled

Article excerpt

Although Canadian churches presented a strongly-worded letter to heads of government at the Quebec City Summit of the Americas, some faith-based protestors on the other side of the fence came away from the weekend disgruntled at what they call a weak showing from the church community.

Leaders of 34 countries signed the Quebec Declaration promising to form the world's largest free trade zone from the Arctic Circle to Cape Horn, following the April 22 to 24 meetings in Quebec. An estimated 30,000 protestors went to Quebec to show their opposition to the agreement.

Anglican Bishop Bruce Stavert of Quebec, whose cathedral lay just inside the $2 million fence erected to keep protestors away, presented a letter from the Canadian Council of Churches to a special "civil society" meeting for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) hosted by the federal government.

The CCC asked the leaders to conform to United Nations standards of human rights, to protect the rights of aboriginal people in the Americas, and to cancel national debts. The letter listed the security of agricultural communities, the preservation of publicly funded health and education and the prevention of intellectual property patents from blocking access to life-saving medicines as areas of concern. …


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