PN Staff

PN Staff

PN staff

2 August 2022News

19 million Afghans face starvation due to Western theft of country's reserves

In Afghanistan, ‘more people will die of hunger in 2022 alone than from violence during the last 20 years of conflict’, if the international community does not take drastic action.

That was the warning, back in December, from four aid experts including Elizabeth Winter, executive director of BAAG, the British & Irish Agencies Afghanistan Group. BAAG includes ActionAid, CAFOD, Christian Aid and Oxfam.

One key issue is Afghanistan’s foreign reserves. When the Taliban retook…

1 August 2022Feature

Humanitarian crisis set to worsen despite truce, as British arms sales to Saudi Arabia continue

After seven years of war which have plunged the country into the worst humanitarian crisis on the planet, Yemen has just enjoyed a four-month truce, likely to be extended for several more months. In another hopeful sign, there is a chance that Yemen’s ‘floating time bomb’, a huge, crumbling oil storage ship just off the coast (see pic), may be drained of oil soon.

However, the British state continues to arm Saudi Arabia, despite overwhelming evidence of Saudi war crimes since the…

1 August 2022News

10-day camp records 'opposition to UK threats of nuclear mass destruction’

Four activists were arrested during the 10-day Trident Ploughshares/XR Peace ‘FABB’ (Faslane Action for Bomb Ban) Camp in Peaton Wood, in western Scotland in June.

On 13 June, one of the arrestees, Gillean Lawrence of XR Peace, was deprived of her heart medication for nine hours by police at Clydebank police station, and threatened with being held overnight without access to her medication. She has made a formal complaint.

Peaton Wood is very close to RNAD Coulport which stores…

1 August 2022News

Nine walk free after anti-arms fair protest

On 25 July, a group of nine anti-arms trade protesters were acquitted after a four-day trial at Stratford magistrates court in East London.

The court found that Meredith Dickinson, Yvette Hannon, Lizzy Haughton, Francis Henderson, Joshua Instone, William James, Emily Robinson, James Uzzell and Luke Whiting did obstruct the highway by blocking an access road to the DSEI arms fair last September.

However, the DSEI Nine were acquitted because the court ruled that the…

1 August 2022News

Whistleblowers say weapons were planted to justify killings

SAS soldiers killed detainees and unarmed men in Afghanistan in suspicious circumstances on dozens of occasions, according to a BBC TV documentary broadcast in mid-July.

Military reports obtained by Panorama suggest that one SAS unit may have killed 54 people unlawfully in one six-month tour.

Whistleblowers from the SAS squadron told the BBC they saw SAS ‘operators’ kill unarmed people during night raids – and then plant AK-47 rifles to justify the killing.

1 August 2022News

30,000 march against military alliance

Peace activists flocked to Madrid before and during the NATO summit in the Spanish capital at the end of June.

There was the biggest anti-NATO march for decades on 26 June, with 30,000 marchers. It was part of the programme of the Madrid Peace Summit, held in the huge, union-owned Auditorio Marcelino Camacho in the city centre.

Sara Herschander reported on Waging Nonviolence that other protests included an XR/Fridays for Future die-in of 30 people at the Reina Sofia…

1 August 2022News

Former PM rejects proposed increase in military spending

The Italian government fell on 21 July partly over the issue of arms supplies to Ukraine.

The Five Star Movement, the hard-to-define, anti-establishment party, and the largest party in Italy’s parliament, had been in governing coalitions since 2018, but it lost confidence in the current national unity government this summer.

The party also split over Ukraine. Foreign minister Luigi Di Maio, in favour of arming Ukraine, broke away from Five Star in June to form a new party, ‘…

1 August 2022News

Report highlights differential treatment of Ukraine and Palestine in UK schools

As thousands of Palestinians demonstrated in Gaza and the West Bank against US president Joe Biden’s visit to the Middle East in mid-July, the British Muslim human rights group CAGE released a report on bias in British education: Understanding Ukraine and Palestine solidarity in UK Schools.

In Bethlehem, Palestine, Palestinian journalists turned up to Biden’s press conference with Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas wearing T-shirts featuring the face of Shireen Abu Aqleh,…

15 June 2022Blog

The Faslane Action for Bomb Ban Camp has led to at least four arrests outside RNAD Coulport, the nuclear warhead storage facility in west Scotland

At least four people have been arrested among the many actions this week at the FABB (Faslane Action for Bomb Ban) Camp in Peaton Wood, in western Scotland.

According to the FABB organisers, one of the arrestees was deprived of her heart medication for nine hours by police and threatened with being held overnight without access to her medication.

The FABB Camp is very close to RNAD Coulport in western Scotland, which holds the…

1 June 2022News

Campaigners demand ‘No US nukes in Britain!’

‘No US nukes in Britain!’ That was the message of over 150 activists from around the UK (and from the Continent) who joined the CND demonstration at USAF Lakenheath on 21 May.

The news that the US air force might be returning nuclear weapons to its base in north Suffolk broke on 11 April with a tweet from US researcher Hans Kristensen: ‘Looks like RAF Lakenheath air base has quietly been added to the list of nuclear weapons storage sites receiving upgrades in Europe.’

1 June 2022News

Protest calls for 'Windmills Not War Machines'

On 22 April, Earth Day, a local anti-militarist action group in North Carolina, USA, held a two-hour blockade of the construction site for a 1.2mn square foot jet engine manufacturing plant belonging to Pratt & Whitney (wholly owned by Raytheon Technologies, the second largest war corporation in the world). The ‘Reject Raytheon Asheville’ protest, called ‘Windmills Not War Machines’, was one of over 30 events in a week of mobilisation around the US sponsored by the War Industry Resisters…

1 June 2022News

Campaign launches UK-wide door-to-door leafleting campaign

On 12 May, peace activist Maria Gallastegui sprayed ‘Priti Patel Save Julian Assange’ on the wall of Belmarsh high-security prison where Assange is being held. She used a drill in a mock break-out attempt as a protest over Assange’s pending extradition.

To prevent any confusion, Maria had a placard saying ‘Jailbreak in progress’. She was taken into custody and held for four hours.

Journalists and free speech groups from around the world have called on the home secretary, Priti…

1 June 2022News

Former PN diarist requests digital deletion

On 9 May, the well-known peace activist and Labour councillor Maya Evans got in touch to ask for the online version of her articles for Peace News to be removed from the PN website.

In line with her request, PN has begun the process of removing the 50 or so items that Maya wrote for us. Most of them are warmly-received Diary pieces that Maya contributed during her four years as the PN Diarist between November 2007 and June 2011. There are also…

1 June 2022News

Video collective wins court battle against injunction

Reel News has just shown the power of independent media to help bring about social change.

On 11 May, the high court threw out an injunction that the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association union tried to take out against the London-based activist video collective. Reel News describe this as ‘a huge victory for free speech and press freedom.’

On 7 May, Reel News had uploaded a video interview with a former organiser, Claire Laycock, detailing serious…

26 April 2022Blog

Three campaigning groups respond 

The news that US billionaire Elon Musk is buying Twitter has sparked a wide range of concerns. One worry has been the emphasis Musk has placed on boosting free speech on the platform. Below are reactions from three different campaigning groups, giving their different perspectives on the issues.

The EFF (based in San Francisco in the US) says it ‘champions user privacy, free expression, and…