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Havana, Cuba: Hemisphere-wide anti-FTA conference begins
Representatives of youth, student, womens and legal networks are attending this seventh edition. Previous meetings concentrated on networking and campaigns.

The conference will advocate integration of the peoples, according to a Cuban television news broadcast.

The meeting closes on Friday with the convening of the Cuban Chapter of the Continental Social Alliance, made up of 22 academic organizations and institutions and professional associations.

Discussions will focus on the current situation of free trade agreements with the United States and the European Union, in addition to assessing the situation of the World Trade Organization in multilateral negotiations, the source noted.

The external debt and current financial domination mechanisms are also on the agenda, plus actions by the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

Special attention will be given to the repercussions of the Bank of the South as an institution that has emerged in the heat of new integrationist efforts in Latin America, and the Network in Defense of Humanity is to speak on identity and the struggles of the peoples against the free trade systems.

Cuban economist Oswaldo Martínez, president of the parliamentary Economic Affairs Commission, affirmed that the meeting would pronounce itself against free trade tactics.

The FTAS are catalogued by their critics as U.S. derivatives of the Free Trade Area of the Americas of the 1990s, said the source.

(Granma international)

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