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America's History in the Making

Resource Archive: Search Results

World Trade Organization (WTO) Protests

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Ralph Radford/Associated Press, PROTESTERS HOLD POLICE AT BAY NEAR THE CONVENTION CENTER DURING WORLD TRADE ORGANIZATION TRADE TALKS (1999). Courtesy of AP/Wideworld.

Creator Ralph Radford/The Associated Press
Context 1999 World Trade Organization trade talks in Seattle
Audience Readers of Associated Press newspapers
Purpose To show the protests at the World Trade Organization trade talks

Historical Significance

In 1999, the World Trade Organization met in Seattle. During that time, anti-WTO protesters demonstrated against the organization's environmental and labor policies and shut down the meeting for one day. The protests galvanized Third World delegates to break from U.S. policy and establish a debate on global trade, but failed to change U.S. trade policy. In 2000 and 2001, other protests against global trade followed at the IMF/ World Bank meeting in Washington, D. C.; the Free Trade Area of Americas meeting in Quebec City, Canada; and the G8 summit in Genoa, Italy. The efforts of anti-globalization proponents have had difficulty overcoming the continuity of free-trade policy maintained by both the Democratic and Republican Parties in the United States; the protests were able to make the public aware of global trade issues, however.

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