President Correa greets the women's caravan for peace on its way to Manta

2007-03-09 00:00:00

Today as part of the International Conference for the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases, the Women's Caravan for Peace made its way from Quito to Manta as part of which national and international leaders celebrated efforts to bring about peace and opposition to the serious consequences caused by the presence of foreign military bases.

Also today during a morning meeting with the No-Bases Coalition of Ecuador and the Global Network for the Abolition of Foreign Military Bases, the President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, confirmed his position to not renew the agreement for the Base in Manta.

For her part, the Minister of Foreign Relations, María Fernanda Espinosa gave the group a warm welcome of support on Ecuador's behalf.

The caravan will make ìts first stop in Santo Domingo de los Colorados from which it will also visit Chone, Montecristi and finally Portoviejo with an anticipated arrival time of approximately 9pm.

Participants in the caravan called for the immediate withdrawal of American troops from Iraq, as part of a series of initiatives that the global network against foreign military bases is preparing. "We don't want anymore bases, we want friendly relations with other countries," said Medea Benjamín of the United States following the meeting.

Takazato Suzuyo of Okinawa-Japan, said that it's now possible to take a global perspective on their struggle, which strengthens the worldwide movement against militarism and military bases. He added that to share with others from around the world facing the same situation has provided knowledge and experience about each story behind the presence of a particular military base.

Natsume Taira said that the final declaration is an important document which was arrived at by listening to the work carried out by regional groups, facilitating contact between countries. This is a source of hope allowing one to take up challenges in the face of imperial impositions.

"For which reason a society which does not include women in an active way, can hardly be more egalitarian."

Quito - March 8th, 2007