Next, Charlie Kimber from the SWP spoke about his experience at Seattle on 30 November last year at the anti-WTO protest. He spoke about the union march and how it was diverted by the union leaders from the city centre where demonstrators were coming under attack from the police. A small group of workers broke off from the diverted march and headed for the city centre where the police backed off from confrontation. He said the police didn't want to attack the workers directly as this would instigate widespread protest from the rest of America. He stated that capitalism was the enemy and socialism the answer.
Lastly, Mike from the World Development Movement spoke about the problems caused by free trade and the rank imbalance of powers within the World Trade Organisation. Citing issues such as hormone injected beef and bananas as examples of how the WTO's system of advocating free trade over all other considerations does not work. He said that over 1500 organisations have called for reform of the WTO. In particular, he mentioned that the US has 250 reps in Geneva at the WTO headquarters, while some of the poorest countries have none. He called for a change in the dispute mechanisms of the organisation as well as a reduction in corporate lobbying.
The speakers were followed by discussion from the floor. While there was much division of opinion between more radical individuals, reformists and left wing political parties, the general consensus was that, following last year's 30 November and June 18th protests wordwide, May Day would be a good time to arrange a Manchester event as part of a global day of action, resistance and carnival against capitalism.