International Rivers Network Pulls Out of DC Protests

To: IRN Friends and Supporters

From: The Staff of International Rivers Network

Date: September 12, 2001

Yesterday our world changed. With the unspeakable events in New York City,
Virginia, and Pennsylvania -- events whose origins we do not yet fully
comprehend -- we at IRN join all other people of good will in expressing
compassion and solidarity with the victims of these tragic and senseless
acts. Our hearts are open to all those who have been affected, especially
those who have lost loved ones.

We encourage all people to support nonviolence rather than retaliation as
the appropriate response to these acts. Similarly, we urge our leaders in
Washington to refrain from responding to this tragedy in a manner that
visits more pain and suffering on an already sorrowed world. We also join
in urging everyone to resist assigning responsibility to any particular
group.

In responding to the changed environment, we have made the following
decisions:

  • The Three Gorges Campaign is suspending the nationwide campus protest
    against Morgan Stanley, originally planned to take place during the week of
    September 17. We extend our sincere condolences to the Morgan Stanley
    organization for the personal losses sustained at the World Trade Center.

  • Out of respect for the victims of this disaster, with understanding of
    the strategic difficulties in conveying to a shocked media and public our
    messages regarding the World Bank and IMF, with concern for the integrity
    of security systems in Washington, DC, and for the safety of all, we will
    refrain from participating in activities surrounding the planned World Bank
    IMF meetings this month. We are also sharing our concerns with the leading
    organizations responsible for planning and coordinating these activities.

    We are acutely aware that we are in a context that we do not and cannot
    fully understand. As we have reflected on the events of September 11 and
    the full range of violence and injustice we see and experience daily, we
    are aware that we must respond to the challenge of viewing the changed
    world and our work through new lenses. We are striving for clearer
    understanding of how we may most effectively achieve the vision of a world
    in which environmental integrity and human rights are inextricably bound.

    We believe that the cycle of violence in which so many nations have long
    participated must be broken. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. reminded us that
    peace is not the absence of conflict, but the presence of justice. We
    invite you to join us in envisioning new ways to break the cycle of
    violence against all living beings and the Earth, so that the peace that is
    justice may flourish for all.

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    • 194 World Financial Institutions

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