David Parker asked to intervene as WTO cancels NGO registrations in bizarre lead-up to ministerial – Jane Kelsey

‘I’ve written to Trade Minister David Parker this morning asking him to intervene urgently over the sudden and bizarre de-registration of representatives of prominent NGOs who had been accredited to attend the World Trade Organization ministerial conference from 10 to 13 December in Buenos Aires, Argentina’, said Auckland university law professor Jane Kelsey. The Minister is one of four vice-chairs of the eleventh WTO ministerial conference (MC11). The groups whose accreditation was cancelled include Friends of the Earth International, the Transnational Institute from the Netherlands, British, Ugandan and Argentina delegates from UK-based Global Justice Now, Internet freedom group Derechos Digitales from Chile and Ecuador, and UNI Global Union Americas regional trade union confederation, digital economy analyst, and Indonesian representative. The WTO’s spokesperson has confirmed the emails are legitimate, and indicated that this decision emanates from Argentina. He says the WTO does not have any explanation for who has been de-registered or why. ‘The 31 people we have so far identified are mostly expert researchers who have attended numerous WTO ministerials previously, many of whom I know and work with on a regular basis’, said Professor Kelsey. ‘From what we can see, almost all those deregistered are affiliated to the global network Our World is Not for Sale (OWINFS), which has a long-standing engagement in WTO activities. For example, OWINFS organised numerous panel sessions at this year’s WTO Public Forum...

Read More