Civil society boycotts Hague conference

In the wake of the Genoa protests and confrontations with police and paramilitary units the Italian government has decided to move the planned NATO Summit meeting on 26-27 September from the city of Naples to the Pozzuoli military base on the outskirts. See also EU plans to counter protests: Statewatch report

In the USA major protests are expected at the joint meetings of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank in Washington D.C. between 29-30 September, see:

Protests are also expected at the special conference organised by the Netherlands police in the Hague, 3-5 October where "experts" have been called together to discuss: "Maintaining public order, a democratic approach" (see details below).

The Italian government is also calling for the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation (FOA) planned meeting on 5-9 November to be moved from Rome to an African country.

Civil society declines to attend "Maintaining public order, a democratic approach" conference, Hague, Netherlands

The organisers of the "Maintaining public order, a democratic approach" conference" were keen to get a "token" speaker from the protest movement to attend. Naomi Klein, the author, was invited to speak but declined, because she did not feel like to be used as the flagship of a police conference. The message inviting her said:

"Dear Mrs. Klein,

On behalf of the chief of police of the city The Hague, The Netherlands, Mr. Jan Wiarda, I contact you. We are in the process of organising an international conference on the subject: "maintaining public order, a democratic approach".

The conference will be related to the aspects of public order, riots etc. at the time of meetings of IMF, WB, G7 etc (a.o. Seattle, Prague, Melbourne....). Representatives of the various police forces of Europe, Northern America and Australia will be invited. The conference will be held in The Hague, The Netherlands, from 3 till 5 October 2001.

Mr. Jan Wiarda likes to discuss with you the possibility to invite you to deliver a paper at the conference. I also contacted Mrs.Magill of your publishing agency with the same request. Please contact me as soon as possible. Best regards and stay healthy.

Kasper Doornbusch, Colonel of the Dutch police, The Hague"

They also tried to get Jerry Mander, International Forum on Globalisation, and someone from Friends of the Earth. Mr Doornbusch then invited David Korten, a commentator from the USA, who accepted, withdrew, but who has now decide to attend after having had a "dialogue" with the Dutch police.

Calling notice and Agenda of the "Maintaining public order, a democratic approach" conference, Hague, Netherlands

International Conference
Global Civil Society
Maintaining Public Order, A democratic approach
By invitation only

3rd, 4th and 5th October 2001
Dutch Conference Centre The Hague - The Netherlands


During the WTO meetings in Seattle in December 1999, a wide variety of organizations and groups protested against the globalization of the economy and its impact on the people of the southern hemisphere and third world countries, and on the environment. What could be called a global civil society - a network of individuals and groups - has grown up. Farmers. workers, students, environmental activists and Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) came together in the streets of Seattle to express their displeasure as vociferously us they could. The great majority of the protesters were non-violent, but the rest chose to mount a violent protest The demonstrations and protests were consequently accompanied by violent riots and disturbances. Since then almost every summit - be it economic or political - has been held against a background of demonstrators against globalisation. They include:

Washington, A


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