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Sign the Pledge of Resistance against an attack on Iraq

Reports from the 14 and 15 February 2003

National Demo against war on Iraq

mass SIT-DOWN after the march

View details of the event

for the latest press releases see the Peace News news wire

Contacts: email or phone 0845 458 2564.

See video footage of the London march on 15 February

Press release Feb 15th 21:15

Voices in the Wilderness UK/ ARROW/ the D10 Group 0794 7839992

Sat, in the name of love

Over a hundred anti war activists sat down in the road around Eros, Picadilly Circus Saturday night, following the massive anti war march in central London. At 6pm 150 people were sitting in the road, with several hundred supporters standing nearby, including a samba band.

Dozens were arrested for highway obstruction, lifted off the road and "de-arrested" by police as the crowds cheered in support. Five of those arrested for highway obstruction were taken to Charing Cross police station. Information so far is that 3 of them (Angie Zelter, Dave Rolstone and Voices in the Wilderness UK(1) joint co ordinator Gabriel Carlyle) have been "de-arrested" at the police station. The other two arrested, Michael Nendick and Kevin Johnstone, are currently still in Charing Cross police station.

After the initial flurry of activity, police briefly re opened the road, but it was closed again by spontaneous small sit downs, until about 8.15pm when the crowd dispersed.

Milan Rai, joint co ordinator of Voices in the Wilderness UK, which co organised the sit down with ARROW(2) and the D10 Group(3), said, "Today's march was an inspiration, there was fantastic atmosphere and we sent a very clear message to Tony Blair that this country doesn't want war. If he does take us into a war with Iraq, he can be sure that the mass civil disobedience at Piccadilly Circus tonight will be magnified many times."

Call 0794 7839992 (1) see http://www.voicesuk.org for more info (2) See http://www.j-n-v.org for more info (3) See http://www.thed0group.org

Anti war message delivered to Downing Street

NEWS RELEASE 14th February 2003.

"War breaks my heart" say Valentine War Protesters locked to Downing Street Gates

Five anti-war activists have, this morning (10am Friday 14th February) locked themselves to a huge pink heart constructed from wood and metal at the gates of Downing Street in an attempt to stop the War on Iraq.

"War breaks my heart" is the message, the protestors are wearing huge pink fluffy hearts are attempting to deliver a Valentine card to Mr. Blair. The police are warning them of arrest for obstructing the highway.
In a protest against the humanitarian cost of a war on Iraq, the five Oxford based protestors are attached by their arms to the heart 'lock-on' which is emblazoned with the message "War Breaks My Heart".

"There will be 500,000 Iraqi casualties1 if this inhumane conflict goes ahead. It could create almost a million refugees" said activist Rebecca. "This is a war to further an aggressive, profit-led, US agenda2. It's a war that is putting the quest for resources over the lives and homes of innocent families. This is a people that have suffered daily bombing raids and terrible, punitive sanctions for the twelve years since the last Gulf War. They have suffered enough."

Activist KathrynTulip said "War is not the answer. You cannot bomb your way to peace! The UK has no place supporting this obscene conflict. Blair needs to end his love affair with Bush and listen to the people.".

Photographs available from Sam Thomas 020 7490 3633

Notes for the Editor:

1.According to a leaked UN document entitled 'Likely Humanitarian Scenarios' : "as many as 500,000 people could require treatment to a greater or lesser degree as a result of direct or indirect injuries". The document then goes on to describe the collapse of the primary healthcare system and damage to basic infrastructure such as water and power. Food shortages will lead to a "dire" nutritional status for 3.03million people. The conflict is expected to create 900,000 refugees. www.casi.org.uk/info/undocs/ war021210.html

2. For example a recent Deutsche Bank report indicates that US corporation Exxon Mobil have the most to gain from "regime change" in Iraq. Exxon are widely credited with putting Bush in power, and Bush widely credited with serving their interests by refusing to sign the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change. Exxon also fund the American Enterprise Institute which has been vocal in calling for war.

The Oxford Pledge of Resistance group is one of a growing number of groups committed to taking and supporting non-violent direct action against war on Iraq. For more information on the Pledge of Resistance see www.j-n-v.org On Sunday 19th January 6 activists from the same group locked themselves to a huge pair of purple Y-fronts carrying the message "War is Pants" outside the gates of the Northwood Joint Operational Command Base in London. It took Ministry of Defence Police 4 hours to cut the protestors free of their lock-on.

Thousands are expected to show their dissent in a sit-down protest after the anti-war march tomorrow. Organised by ARROW Active Resistance To The Roots of War), Voices in the Wilderness and D10, the "Love not War, Peace not Hate" sit down is planned for 5pm moving from Green Park to occupy a central London street.

Press Release February 4th

2003 ARROW/ Voices in the Wilderness UK/ The D10 Group
Call 0845 458 2564/ 0794 7839992

Mass love-in planned after anti war march Anti war activists are planning a mass "love-in" after the February 15th anti war march at Eros, Piccadilly.

Activists will gather in Green Park at 5pm (or later if the march hasn't finished by then) and make their way to Piccadilly, following giant love hearts, where they will sit down, risking arrest for highway obstruction.

The march, which is expected to be the largest ever anti war march in Britain, will finish at Hyde Park Organisers CND, the Stop the War Coalition and the Muslim Association of Britain expect over half a million people to attend. (Assemble Embankment 12pm) ARROW, Voices in the Wilderness UK and the D1O group, organisers of the sit-down, which is supported by CND and Women in Black expect several thousand to join the sit- down after the march.

Milan Rai of ARROW said, "Lots of people who were coming to London for this huge march asked us to help organise a mass act of civil disobedience after the march. People's lives in Iraq depend on how great we can make the political costs of war. One way of increasing the political cost is by escalating protest into resistance, into nonviolent civil disobedience. The fact it will be Valentine's weekend chose Eros as the ideal site for a mass love in."

"We believe that civil disobedience and nonviolent action are powerful tools that we can use to resist an illegal and immoral war. In using these tools we are drawing on a rich tradition of protest and dissent that includes not only Gandhi and Martin Luther King but also the 'People Power' revolutions in the Philippines and Eastern Europe, the Suffragettes, Danish resistance to Nazi occupation during WWII, the Argentinean Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo and many others."

Look out for the love hearts after the march!

See www.j-n-v.org for more details
Call ARROW/ Voices on 0845 458 2564/ 0794 7839992


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