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support against french colonialism

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French Guiana is an overseas region of France, located in South America next to Brazil. It was originally a French colony based on slave trade and has today the status of French department. It is the largest region in France and is replete with natural resources such as gold, oil, and timber. Its geographical location places France on the American continent. It is also home of European and French Space Agencies, where up to one rocket/satellite a month is launched.

And yet, French Guiana is France’s poorest region, on the brink of disintegration:

·         High insecurity with the highest murder rate of all France’s overseas territories

·         Rampant crime and trafficking around illegal gold mines (estimated at 302 in 2016), led by criminals from neighbouring countries.

·         Permanent social imbalance between the expatriate community, composed mainly of highly paid officials, and the local population

·         High unemployment, where 50% of under-25s are unemployed (22% overall)

·         High flux of illegal immigration from Surinam and Brazil

·         Shocking living conditions: constant power cuts, partial access to drinking water and an increasing number of slums sprouting in the capital

·         Poor health care system, failing education, high cost of living

·         Deforestation of the rainforest, with devastating consequences for the indigenous population

And the list goes on. French Guiana has been forgotten by France, its population disregarded as third class citizens Today the country is in unprecedented turmoil: mass protests, roadblocks, and a general strike called by unions and a collective called the “500 Brothers against delinquency”. Dressed in black, anonymous and hooded, members of the non-violent group are standing up against organised crime and social injustice.

The collective is demanding new schools and teachers, a new judiciary and a police commissioner, improved public hospitals as well as improved telecom and new roads.

This crisis has brought the country' to a complete standstill. But the whole population is standing behind the movement, with a motto: 'Nou bon ké sa' (Enough is enough, in Guianese Créole).

French Guyana is yet another illustration of France’s neo-colonialist policy, which is destroying its overseas territories – Guadeloupe, Martinique, French Guiana and La Reunion. It is based on exploitation of local resources with complete disregard for the local population. This is why, today, we, The Community in London, are standing behind this movement and chanting together: Nou bon ké sa!



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