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Belem 2009: working together in the run up to the World Assembly of Inhabitants

Dialogue and links between organizations of inhabitants and urban social movements continue to build in the run up to the World Assembly of Inhabitants.

After the success of the World Zero Evictions Days as well as the call to the
G20, Build a Global Social Pact for Equitable and Sustainable Habitat now!, the next phase is the World Social Forum (Belem, 27 January-1 February 2009). Stakeholders in the housing and urban sector will be meeting up at the WSF, both at their own initiative and at the joint area established by Urban Tent.
The IAI will be attending and holding the yearly meeting of its Coordination Committee as well as launching two broad-based public initiatives.

The first initiative takes stock of the Zero Evictions Campaign at the social, political and institutional levels, including the relationship with UN-Habitat AGFE (Advisory Group on Forced Evictions). The objective is to examine the campaign’s effectiveness before giving it a broader application. Also to be considered is the need to strengthen its local roots, as exemplified by the Belém Observatory on the impact of city renovation on the lives of city dwellers. It will also include the world preview projection of the 13 IAI Video Contest films.
The second initiative, which is strategic in nature, aims to reinforce the establishment of the World Assembly of Inhabitants by proposing the establishment of a Promoter Committee with a common agenda for the purpose of organizing the various aspects of this innovative approach. The initiative will mainly target inhabitant networks and urban social movements, as well as all those active in housing and urban issues, including NGOs and supportive local authorities (FAL-FALA), and proposes cooperation with other organisations such as Via Campesina and Dignity International.
The involvement in an exchange of experiences organised with Dignity International and local organisations (23-26 January), participation in the forums organized in parallel, such as the World Education Forum (26-27 January) and Local Authorities Forum (FAL-FALA, 30-31 January), as well as in other seminars and workshops (Charter on the Right to the City, Women and Housing, Housing Cooperative, Forms of Urban Resistance, etc.), are indispensable for training and networking local g-leaders participating in the WSF.
These links will be find an immediate and concrete outlet in the assembly of convergence in the open space made available by IAI at the Urban Tent on 30 January: each participant with their own campaign, but everyone ready to strengthen exchanges, unify strategies and support the struggle for the right to housing and to the city without borders.