CSM Opening Statement at CFS 45

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Intervention for the opening of the 45thCFS Plenary Session – 15 October 2018

Iridiani Seibert – La Via Campesina (Brazil)

Co-coordinator of the Women’s Constituency of the MSC

We salute the CFS member states, participating institutions and observers. We hope that this 45th session will be marked by a renewed commitment to the CFS, to strengthen the Committee and its contribution to overcoming the alarming situation of hunger and malnutrition in the world we face today.

First of all, it is with great pleasure that we inform you today that our Civil Society Mechanism has been strengthened by the inclusion of Indigenous Peoples in its own name. After a year of consultation, the CSM Coordination Committee has decided by consensus, and the CSM Forum has celebrated this decision, that from now on we will be called “Civil Society and Indigenous Peoples’ Mechanism for relations with the Committee on Food Security”. With this name amendment, we reaffirm our recognition of the identity of indigenous peoples and express our full solidarity with their historical struggles to be recognized in their identity and their right to self-determination as indigenous peoples.

We are extremely concerned because we see that we are on the wrong track towards achieving the goal of ending hunger, established by the SDGs. Today, 821 million women, men, boys and girls suffer from hunger and food and nutritional insecurity. 821 million people in all regions of the world go to bed every day without having eaten.

The SOFI 2018 Report again calls our attention and imposes concrete actions and commitments on us once and for all. Hunger and food insecurity are the most important problems we face in the world today. It is a human rights issue. The most important response to the alarming figures presented by SOFI 2018 is that the international community must commit itself more than ever to the respect, protection and guarantee of the human right to adequate food.

Today, on the tenth anniversary of World Rural Women’s Day, the condition in which we rural women find ourselves does not allow us to celebrate. Sixty per cent of the 821 million people suffering from hunger are women and girls. On this anniversary, we want to reiterate the need for the commitment of States to promote actions and policies to overcome these data, as they have expressed in SDG 5 which consists of: “the construction of actions and policies for the promotion of women’s rights within the framework of human rights, guaranteeing the right to food as well as the promotion of equality and eliminating violence and discrimination against women”.

We have built the International Day of Rural Women together in this space to highlight the value of rural women, and that is why we understand that from the CFS we must commit ourselves to make this important date visible in the annual plenary sessions.

And as rural women, peasants, fisherfolks, indigenous, pastoralists, agricultural and food workers, young, consumers and landless, we believe that it is fundamental that States recognize the contribution that women make to overcome food insecurity and hunger. With our production, we feed the peoples and contribute to food security but also to the food sovereignty of the peoples from an agro-ecological practice and from a feminist perspective of gender equality.

We hope that on the 20th anniversary we can truly commemorate the progress towards this objective that we have in common with the member states present here and we believe that women have much to collaborate in this. May women, individuals and peoples realize their right to food, equality and the right to live without violence and without discrimination!