G8 – Lobbies and Protests

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Critics of the group come not just from political and diplomatic circles.

From the end of the 1990s anti-globalization demonstrations has become the regular accompaniment of the summit. Besides asserting their opinions it occured that protesters attempted to stand in the way of attendees of the summit, or took other measures in trying to disorient the event.

Most memorably during the 2001 Genoa summit, the protests turned violent and resulted in the death of a demonstrator and the injury of about 70 more.

For this reason mainly, ever since 2001 there is an explicit intention to hold the meetings in remote locations thus trying to avoid mass demonstrations. 

There is a more welcome accompaniment to the G8 summit though. Internationally recognized NGOs and lobby groups try to use the momentum created by the event to raise awarness to their own causes.

It is now sort of customary for some NGOs to schedule the publications of reports and fact sheets to coincide with the summit. The more influential lobbyists may even hold meetings with state representatives on the sideline of the G8.

Just this weekend international anti-corruption activists met British Prime Minister David Cameron urging him to call for strong commitments on transparency at the G8.

Also ONE Campaign came up with a very special initiative this year, asking great musicians from around the world to re-sing famous protest songs. That is one form of protesting, and surely no-one dies in the process.

I picked U2’s Sunday Bloody Sunday, as Bono is the founder of ONE, but you really should check out the whole list here, you will surely find your favorite.

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