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NGOs challenge neo-liberal policies at Davos

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Anti-globalisation activists are challenging this year's meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos with an alternative conference calling for a fair global economic policy.

The alternative conference is part of an international campaign, "The Public Eye on Davos". It coincides with this year's WEF meeting in Davos, which takes place from January 25 to 30.

Organisers of the alternative events said 20 guests from all over the world would speak at the conference and point out the negative impact of globalisation.

The campaign, which is coordinated by the Swiss non-governmental organisation, the Berne Declaration, pledged to monitor the proceedings of the WEF. But it rejected violence as a means to promote its cause.

The organisers also said that, unlike last year, they were not interested in seeking dialogue with WEF representatives.

At a news conference on Thursday, members of the Berne Declaration and the environmental group, Pro Natura, called for a halt to globalisation and liberalisation at the expense of the environment.

The groups also criticised WEF as nothing more than a talking shop for proponents of globalisation. The groups accused the business world of trying to dominate politics, and called for more democracy and transparency.

This year's WEF meeting is being overshadowed by fears of large-scale demonstrations and violence by militant protesters.

The local authorities in Davos have banned demonstrations during the WEF meeting and called in extra security forces from across Switzerland.

swissinfo with agencies


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