News / Africa

Protesters Occupy Durban Climate Conference

Protesters shout as they demonstrate at the climate change conference in Durban, South Africa, December 9, 2011.
Protesters shout as they demonstrate at the climate change conference in Durban, South Africa, December 9, 2011.

Multimedia

Audio
Gabe Joselow

About 100 protesters staged a two-hour demonstration Friday at the convention center in Durban, South Africa, where United Nations climate talks are stuck in deadlock.  Youth activists at the U.N. climate conference are disappointed with the lack of progress and are demanding more urgent action.

As government negotiators met behind closed doors at the COP17 conference, meters away a group of protesters made their voices heard.

U.N. security guards surrounded the area while the activists - some from the environmental group Greenpeace, others from various youth organizations - made it clear that they did not think the delegates were acting in their best interest.

Adam Greenberg, a student from the United States, who participated in the action, said he and other American youths at the conference adamantly disagree with the U.S. position at the talks.

"But I think it's very clear.  There's between 50 and 80 approximately U.S. youth here, [and] except for the four that are here with the State Department, everyone else is very directly against the line that the United States is showing," noted Greenberg.  "They've spoken out about it very clearly, very loudly, very prominently that that does not represent us, that does not represent science, that does not represent our future."

A day earlier, another American youth interrupted a speech by the head of the U.S. delegation, Todd Stern, protesting against the U.S. position that it does not expect to adjust emissions targets until 2020.

And earlier this week, six Canadian youths turned their back on an address by their country's environment minister, to protest against Canada's plans to pull out of the Kyoto Protocol, a legally binding mandate to cut carbon emissions blamed for global warming.

Cat Hudson, with the U.K. Youth Coalition, said she hopes the protests that began here at COP17 will reverberate back in Britain.

"Also, I want it to go back home," said Hudson.  "We're representing thousands of people back home who support us and so if it's going to go viral, and people are supporting us, then it's definitely going to influence people here like the whole 'Occupy' movement type thing, that's definitely just a fact."

Police eventually removed the protesters without force.  Their message delivered loud and clear, the students went on their way.

And negotiators from governments around the world continued their meetings, with still little reported progress on any deal to combat climate change.

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid