Wales could see its biggest protests in a generation as 60 world leaders meet at the Celtic Manor in Newport for the NATO summit on 4th -5th September to plan their war on the world. Previous summits in Chicago and Strassbourg saw thousands protest war, austerity and global inequality.
From August 30th people will flock to South Wales for international actions including a weekend march and Counter Summit, week-long peace camp, and protests on the summit’s opening day.
NATO is the nuclear-armed military alliance binding Europe to US foreign policy, a foreign policy post-Iraq increasingly unpopular around the world. It is also the military alliance currently occupying Afghanistan.
War is the enemy of the poor. The world’s 85 richest people have as much as poorest 3.5 billion. The annual sum needed to end world hunger is $30 billion while the US Military’s budget is $530 billion per year.
Money into war is money out of our communities. In the UK, 500,000 people had to resort to food banks last year. While public services are slashed, one day of war in Afghanistan could fund 100,000 nurses.
This autumn the powerful will make their voices heard at the NATO summit. We must make sure that the voice of the millions around the world who need peace and justice is also heard.
The DPRTE event last November saw police brutality and surveillance against students on their own campus. This sparked us to set up this workshop for people across Bristol to gain the skills needed in legal observing.
Legal Observer Workshop
Sunday 6th April, 12-6pm
Kebele, Robertson Road
Bring lunch to share.
The workshop’s main aims will be:
1) A practical introduction to Legal Observing
2) An outline of Legal Support and Media coordination
3) Discussion on setting-up a local Legal Observer Network
4) Preparation for GDAMS Global Day of Action on Military Spending on Monday 14th April 2014 see http://demilitarize.org/ & http://demilitarize.org.uk/ and other future events in the Bristol area plus NATO at Newport in September
As a background it might be useful to familiarise yourself with some of these links:-
If you can’t make this workshop we’re hoping to book more in the future so stay in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
Anti-militarist activists today blockaded a NATO conference at a stately home in the Sussex countryside. Meanwhile, banners were hung off road bridges close to the venue to greet delegates as they arrived at Wiston House in Steyning.
Protesters succeeded in blocking the front entrance for more than an hour, leading to chaotic scenes on the A283, as cars queued to get into the estate.
- See more at: http://smashedo.org.uk
Kite flying has become synonymous with Afghanistan as a well loved pursuit which was banned under the Taliban, now Afghans are more used to the presence of UK and US armed and surveillance drones flying overhead. In the last 5 years there have been 547 UK drone strikes on Afghanistan, which is now the “drone capital” of the world.
Join us for this creative mass kite flying action in solidarity with Afghans during their New Year and to demonstrate our opposition to drone warfare. Learn about Britain’s armed drones being used in Afghanistan and the effects on children.
There’ll be kites to fly, a children’s area to make kites and messages for children in Afghanistan, plus music and fire eating entertainment!
Bristol Against the Arms Trade presents Skills Not Bombs!
Sunday 16th Feb (that’s this Sunday!). 11am- 4pm
The Arc, Broad Street, Bristol, BS1 2HG
A day of skills and learning in the centre of Bristol. There will be a mixture of workshops and speakers on the following:
-NATO summit in Newport this September
-Direct Action and Planning Creative Actions
We’ve got guests from Campaign Against the Arms Trade, Stop NATO Cymru and Drone Wars UK.
It’s going to be a great day of sharing information and skills on effectively campaign and taking action against the arms trade and militarisation.
That evening we’ll be heading down to Kebele Co-op in Easton for some food at the bargain price of £2.50 followed by an open mic.
The BBC’s Panorama reports that in 2009 Comic Relief had £630,000 invested in shares in weapons firm BAE Systems. Comic Relief will not confirm how its money has been invested since 2009.
Sarah Waldron, a spokesperson for Campaign Against Arms Trade, said:
“It is unacceptable for Comic Relief to have invested millions of pounds in a company which profits from insecurity and human rights abuse. BAE’s weapons have been used against men, women and children around the world.
“There is no excuse for these investments, which are in direct contradiction to Comic Relief’s stated aims. The arms trade creates and exacerbates poverty and fuels conflict.
“Comic Relief needs to start being transparent about its investments. It owes it to its supporters to use all of their money for good.”
Companies attending today’s ‘Defence, Procurement, Research, Technology and Exportation’ Event were greeted this morning by queues trailing back along the A4174 as protesters blocked the UWE North Entrance. One gate was eventually locked and attendees forced to use other entrances. Later as they approached the building attendees were accompanied to the door of UWE’s Exhibition and Conference Centre by protesters just letting them know who would be attending the event; the likes of Raytheon (cluster bombs in Iraq, missiles in Gaza), Babcock (nuclear submarines), Chemring (teargas used in the Arab Spring) and our good friends BAE Systems. Crowds of protesters gathered at the entrance to ensure that UWE were suitably embarrassed to be holding the event and that those entering were told they weren’t welcome on the campus or in our city. Some UWE students peacefully enter arms conference and staged a die-in. They were threatened with arrest for trespassing on their own university. The protest continued around campus letting students know what was being held at their space and banners held at each entrance. Arms dealers and the likes of these companies will be greeted by the same response at future events at UWE.
Petition to stop UWE’s investment and support of the arms industry: