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7 octobre 2016 5 07 /10 /octobre /2016 10:10

(Oral statement given at World Intelectual Property Organization General assembly on behalf of World Blind Union)

It´s been a marvelous journey. Thank you WIPO for opening up your doors in an exceptional show of institutional transparency and public participation and we hope other large institutions follow your example.  Thank you to those countries that supported us from the beginning, but also thank you to other large countries and blocks of  countries  who expressed resistance but that learned to progress forward with flexibility and were able to change course when needed despite almost unbearable pressure from special interest lobbies. You have all set an example for citizen-based international negotiations. Even thank you for ordering pizzas at midnight during endless, tortuous debates.  

The Marrakesh Treaty has set a marvelous precedent in international law because it uniquely combines disability rights, development goals for access to culture in the Global South, access to knowledge in the digital sphere, copyright reform for users, recognition of the key intermediary role of librarians and the importance of civil society initiatives for international lawmaking.   

Today is also the day to express special gratitude to an exceptional group of three or four dozen key civil society campaigners around the world who have worked brilliantly and tirelessly for a number of years through a roller-coaster ride of torturous meetings, political betrayals and alliances, high hopes and bitter despairs, in order to make this Treaty possible.
 
The Marrakesh Treaty proves that positive change in favor of the common good can be made, even in complicated global institutions and against great odds. In today´s world this is not a small thing.

Thank you, you are the Salt of the Earth  and it has been a priviledge to work and fight with you and this treaty would not exist without you:   Jamie Love, Manon Rees, Dan Pescod, Marcos de Souza, Ragavender, Pablo Lecuona, the late Rahul Cherian, Chris Friend, Maryanne Diamond,  Scott Le Barre, Fred Schroder, Rodolfo Cattani, Thiru Thiru Balasubramaniam, Ruth Okediji,  Jim Fructerman, Barbara Martin, Francisco Martinez, Luis Villaroel,   Pranesh Prakesh, Nirmita Narasimhan, Teresa Hacket, Barbara Stratton and please forgive me for not mentioning so many others.

You have all made the “Marrakesh Express” something much more that an old Crosby, Stills,Nash and Young song.

 

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