Open World Conference of Workers

In Defense of Trade Union Independence & Democratic Rights


International Liaison Committee for a Workers' International:
Who We Are & What We Stand For

The International Liaison Committee for a Workers' International (ILC) was set up in Barcelona (Spain) in January 1991 at the First Open World Conference by delegates from 63 countries. These delegates represented various organizations and various political currents in the working class.

Our purpose was to help unite the working class, youth and oppressed peoples of the world to fight back against the onslaught by global capitalism. Our program was clear and simple: No to privatisation, deregulation and war. We adopted on this basis a "Manifesto Against War and Exploitation."

Another central point of the ILC's platform was the defense of the independent organizations of workers throughout the world, particularly the trade unions.

The International Liaison Committee firmly believes that the emancipation of the working class from the yoke of oppression imposed by global capitalism will be achieved only by the workers themselves. The history of class struggle has shown that every gain has been won through the fight of independent working-class organizations. Since that first meeting, the ILC has grown into a multi-tendency regroupment of unionists and political activists in 94 countries.

The International Liaison Committee held three Open World Conferences -- in 1991, 1993 and 1996. In February 2000, we held an Open World Conference organized in common with the San Francisco Labor Council (AFL-CIO). Six-hundred unionists and activists, representing unions and democratic organizations from 56 countries, met in the Open World Conference in Defense of Trade union Independence and Democratic Rights, expressing clearly in their final declaration the goals of the Conference:

"Our aim is to improve living and working conditions and to defend the rights and guarantees codified in collective-bargaining agreements, labor codes and Conventions of the International Labor Organization (ILO). These are the conditions for genuine peace in the world. These are the conditions for a real democracy in all countries, which can only be based upon the right of peoples to self-determination and equality between races."

In February 2002, in Berlin (Germany), the ILC -- together with the Continuations Committee of the San Francisco Open World Conference and a broad Hosting Committee of German trade unionists -- convened the International Conference Against Deregulation and For Labor Rights for All. For the first time in decades, an International Conference in Defense of Working Women's Rights took place on the eve of the conference against deregulation.

Since its foundation, the ILC has been involved in a permanent campaign in defense of ILO Conventions. That's why every year in Geneva, on the occasion of the ILO yearly assembly, the ILC holds a Conference for the Defense of ILO Conventions. The ILC is also involved in a campaign against Child Labor, and we participated in the various sessions of the International Tribunal Against Child Labor and Slavery.

At the same time, we have organized various regional campaigns and initiatives. We supported actively the International Tribunal to Judge Those Responsible for the Murderous Course Imposed on the Peoples of Africa. The first session of this Tribunal was held in Los Angeles in February 2000 at the initiative of numerous Black organizations in the United States. A permanent campaign has been organized around the verdict pronounced by that Tribunal.

In the same way, we have organized multiple campaigns against "Free Trade" agreements -- for example against NAFTA and the FTAA in the Americas, and against the Maastricht Treaty in Europe. The ILC has also organized many workers' defense campaigns, demanding the release of activists jailed for their trade unionist activity in China, Romania, Korea, Togo, and countless other countries.

The International Liaison Committee does not intend to substitute itself for the existing international worker organizations, nor does it enter into competition with them. The ILC takes as its historical model the International Workers' Association -- the First International, founded in 1864 in London. The goal was then as now to organize all the currents genuinely fighting for the defense of workers, on the basis of workers' democracy, respecting their diversity, to promote united action.

On January 23 -24, 2003, we organised an Emergency Conference Against War and decided to build the "International Labour Movement Against War."

This is a short summary of our campaigns and goals. Every week, we publish an eight-page electronic bulletin in three languages with invaluable international information concerning the ILC's activities.

The ILC Newsletter is a weekly information dossier published by the International Liaison Committee (ILC).

For more information, please contact:
International Liaison Committee -ILC, c/o Parti des travailleurs - 87, rue du Faubourg Saint-Denis, 7510 Paris France
phone:(331)4801-8828 fax:(331)4801-8836
e-mail -

ILC Newsletter Issues Available On-line

ILC Newsletter Issues in Spanish

Debate over World Social Forums

Chittagong Conference

Asia Workers Conference

South Africa

The Workers Party and the CUT in Brazil





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