Bove Urges Activists in Canada to Sabotage GE Crops

Bove Presses Activists to Fight GM in Americas

QUEBEC CITY, Canada, April 19 (AFP) - Rebel French farmer Jose Bove,
infamous for trashing a McDonald's in 1999, on Thursday pressed activists
here to fight by any means necessary the spread of using genetically
modified organisms (GMOs), ahead of a summit this weekend.

Bove, who was given a special ministerial permit to enter Canada for
demonstrations against the April 20-22 summit, denounced a hemispheric
trade pact to be discussed by leaders gathering here as a means of
expanding GMO use throughout the Americas. The 48-year-old French sheep
farmer and union leader told the nearly 300 activists gathered in front
a provincial agricultural building that transnational corporations force
GMO policy on farmers and eliminate alternative farming practices.

Responding to a question on whether he was calling for violence, Bove
said "when a situation imposes itself, one must resort to illegal
(means) so that the rights of people are respected." "The fight against
GMOs is a fundamental fight, whether you're a farmer or a citizen," he
said, noting that Canada is the world's second largest producer of GMOs.

The 34 North, South and Central American leaders gathering for the
Summit of the Americas must hear this because under a Free Trade Area of
the Americas more transnational groups would impose their patented GM
seeds on farmers, particularly corn growers in South America, he said.
These seeds, Bove added, will contaminate neighboring fields and
"destroy the biodiversity in this kind of land." "We have to fight
against this because if this goes on that means the farmers can't decide
anymore what they are going to put in their land," he stressed.

Bove is facing a three-month prison sentence in France for ransacking a
McDonald's fast-food restaurant in Millau, France in August 1999, but he
is appealing the ruling. One of the organizers of the rally, Devlin
Kuvek, said groups from throughout the Americas, including Brazil's
Landless Peasants Movement (MST), came to the rally against GMOs because
it "is not an issue people are really discussing" in the context of a
hemispheric trade pact.

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