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Land reform a priority now for Chavez

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  • Tony Gosling
    Why the CIA hate land reform http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/business/3612114.stm ... this month, has vowed to step up controversial agricultural
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 2, 2004
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      Why the CIA hate land reform
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/business/3612114.stm
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      >
      >Venezuela land reforms to push on

      >Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez, who survived a referendum earlier
      this month, has vowed to step up controversial agricultural reforms.
      >
      >The government plans to enforce a 2001 land law that allows it to either
      tax or seize unused land, Mr Chavez said during his weekly television
      address.
      >
      >"We are going after the idle land and will put it to work," he said.
      >
      >The issue has provoked strong emotions in a country where a minority own
      the majority of agricultural land.
      >
      >Both sides
      >
      >Critics claim that Mr Chavez is trying to enforce a communist-style
      economic programme that ignores property rights and will damage the
      country.
      >
      >To his supporters, however, Mr Chavez is a champion of the poor who is
      taking steps to right many decades of neglect.
      >
      >Mr Chavez tried to play down the threat he poses to the landed classes.
      >
      >"We are not the enemy of the rural estates, we are not going to burn
      them, we are not going to invade land," he explained.
      >
      >But, "in this stage of the revolution, I demand strict application of
      the constitution and the land law." However, some workers,
      >impatient for the government to intervene, have already seized land.
      >
      >Productivity check
      >
      >The government will assess large estates and look at how best to utilise
      unused land.
      >
      >The redistribution programme allows for some of it to be given over to
      peasant cooperatives, which will get state aid to farm the land.
      >
      >The government last year said that it planned to hand out as much as 3.7
      million acres (1.5 million hectares) to rural workers in the early
      stages of its programme, the Reuters news agency reported.
      >
      >Mr Chavez is not afraid to ruffle feathers and has clashed with the US
      in the past.
      >
      >Earlier this month, he won a referendum on his rule that had
      >threatened to bring the country, and its key oil output, to a halt.
      >
      >In 2002, he survived a coup attempt as well as months of strikes and
      mass opposition rallies.
      >
      >Story from BBC NEWS:
      >http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/business/3612114.stm
      >
      >Published: 2004/08/30 15:20:03 GMT
      >
      >© BBC MMIV

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      ====© Democracy for a Change
      http://www.public-interest.co.uk/D4AC/index.htm


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