More than 1,600 people confronted riot police in Montebello, Canada, Aug. 21-22 while the leaders of the United States, Canada and Mexico discussed the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP). Founded in March 2005 in Waco, Texas, at a similar summit meeting between top government officials and favored corporations, the SPP would strengthen the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) while also intensifying border surveillance and controls.
NAFTA has been blamed for a host of ills, including increased pollution by U.S. corporations operating in Mexico, loss of manufacturing jobs in the United States, abusive working conditions at border factories, the displacement of over a million small farmers in Mexico and a subsequent increase in migration as Mexican nationals head north looking for opportunities.
Facing tear gas, pepper spray and plastic bullets, protesters claimed that the SPP would extend the problems caused by NAFTA.
The SPP has one formal advisory board, the North American Competitiveness Council (NACC), which was launched June 2006 and is made up of 30 top corporate leaders from the three countries.
Four protesters were arrested during the summit, and evidence continues to mount that Canadian used undercover agent provocateurs to instigate violence.
Compiled from reports by Montebello Indymedia and U.S. Indymedia.