- Just an hour ago here in Brazil, the
Chair of the UN meeting announced that governments have agreed to reject
language that would have undermined the moratorium on Terminator.
- Groups, communities and individuals
across the world have joined together in this fight to ban Terminator and
your action has been effective in this important first step.
- The Ban Terminator Campaign will continued
to monitor the meetings today and next week.
- Terminator rejection - a victory for
- A broad coalition of peasant farmers,
indigenous peoples and civil society today celebrate the firm rejection
of efforts to undermine the global moratorium on Terminator technologies
- genetically engineered sterile seeds - at the UN Convention on Biological
Diversity (CBD) in Curitiba, Brazil.
- "This is a momentous day for the
1,4 billion poor people world wide, who depend on farmer saved seeds,"
said Francisca Rodriguez of Via Campesina a world wide movement of peasant
farmers, "Terminator seeds are a weapon of mass destruction and an
assault on our food sovereignty. Terminator directly threatens our life,
our culture and our identity as indigenous peoples", said Viviana
Figueroa of the Ocumazo indigenous community in Argentina on behalf of
the International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity.
- "Todays' decision is a huge step
forward for the Brazilian Campaign against GMOs," said Maria Rita
Reis from the Brazilian Forum of Social movements and NGOs, "This
reaffirms Brazils' existing ban on Terminator. It sends a clear message
to the national government and congress that the world supports a ban on
Terminator." "Common sense has prevailed lifting the Moratorium
on the Terminator seeds would have been suicidal literally,"
said Greenpeace International's Benedikt Haerlin from the Convention meeting.
"This is a genuine victory for civil society around the world - it
will go a long way to ensuring that biodiversity, food security and the
livelihoods of millions of farmers around the world are protected."
- Terminators, or GURTS (Genetic Use Restriction
Technologies), are a class of genetic engineering technologies which allow
companies to introduce seeds whose sterile offspring cannot reproduce,
preventing farmers from re-planting seeds from their harvest. The seeds
could also be used to introduce specific traits which would only be triggered
by the application of proprietary chemicals by the same companies.
- At the CBD Australia, Canada and New
Zealand along with the US government (not a party to the CBD) and a number
of biotech companies were leading attempts to open the door to field testing
of Terminator seeds by insisting on 'case by case' assessment of such technologies.
This text was unanimously rejected today in the CBD's working group dealing
with the issue. It still needs to be formally adopted by the plenary of
- Despite today's victory, there is no
doubt that the multinational biotech industry will continue to push sterile
seed technology. 'Terminator' will rear its ugly head at the next UN CBD
meeting in 2008. The only solution a total ban on the technology once and
f or all," concluded Pat Mooney of the Ban Terminator Campaign. Now
all national governments must enact national bans on Terminator as Brazil
and India have done.