Come to court next week! ✊

We’re back in court next week!

Peace activists Adi and Gary were arrested at last year’s Weapons Expo blockade at the Westpac Stadium. They’re accused of obstructing a public way, for their part in standing up against the arms dealers and warmongers and will go through a three day trial from Monday 17th – Wednesday 19th at Wellington District Court.

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We’ll be there in solidarity and you can join us! Here’s what you could do:

  • Meet outside Wellington District Court at 9am on Monday 17th for a show of solidarity with Adi and Gary, and as a show of resistance against the arms trade.
  • Come along to the hearings themselves – they’ll run from 10am on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at Wellington District Court.
  • Join us at lunchtime – 1pm on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday at Wellington District Court. Feel very free to bring along some kai to share (vegan baking especially welcome!). We MAY move to another location at lunchtime, so keep an eye on our Twitter page for updates.
  • Send us an email or Facebook message of solidarity to Adi and Gary – we’ll pass them on.
  • If you’d like to chip in some cash for court or our other work, you’re very welcome to! Here are our account details: Peace Action Wellington, 38-9007-0839416-00
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We are winning! The Weapons Expo is leaving Wellington!

BIG NEWS! The Weapons Expo is leaving Wellington – together we’ve run the arms dealers out of town!

The annual get-together for arms dealers and the military has been happening in our city for 20 years (except when it went to Tāmaki Makaurau in 2016 and got shut down by the awesome Auckland Peace Action crew!), so it’s a huge win for us that they no longer feel welcome in our city.

Over the years, together we’ve blocked tanks at Te Papa, stopped buses full of arms dealers heading to the Westpac Stadium, and disrupted speeches by Lockheed Martin boss by banging on the walls of the TSB Arena. Following Mayor Justin Lester’s courageous decision to ban them from Council venues last year, we think it’s likely they can no longer find a place in our city to do their dirty deals. We’re so proud to have achieved this with everyone who came and stood against this disgusting trade of death and destruction.

BUT it’s not over yet. The Weapons Expo is moving to Te Papaioea – Palmerston North over Halloween, from the 31st October – 1st November. This will be much less convenient for schmoozy meetings with government and the NZDF leaders, but we need to make sure it’s still impossible for them to have business as usual, while their business is still maximising murdering and maiming.

We and Auckland Peace Action are supporting newly-formed Peace Action Manawatū to stand up to the arms trade in Palmy and we hope you will too. Follow them on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date with the plans! We’ll be organising a crew to head up to Palmy, so SAVE THE DATE if you want to come along and make this Halloween really scary for the arms dealers. In the mean time enjoy this celebration mashup video from Weapons Expo protests 2015-2017.

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Nakba Day Resources

Here is a bunch of free resources you can print and use on Nakba day! (Just click on the text link under the picture.)

Decorate the street, your office, home etc… and show your solidarity with Palestine and the #GreatReturnMarch on #Nakba70 from #AotearoaToPalestine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Gaza will be free poster, Palestinian Village names and Posters of Palestinians who have been killed in the #GreatReturnMarch* were sourced from the Jewish Voice for Peace > https://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/nakba-at-70/

*There are now sadly many more names to add to this list

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Palestine Events in Wellington in May!

Show solidarity with Palestine this May! #FromAotearoaToPalestine.

Join us to support the Cultural Boycott of Israel May 14th 8.15pm at the Roxy.

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Ben Gurion, Epilouge

Help call out the Doc Edge Festival for supporting Israel!

In contravention of the Palestinian Cultural Boycott, Doc Edge Festival has taken sponsorship from the Israeli Embassy for a screening of Ben-Gurion, Epilogue.

This film screening also coincides with the 70th anniversary of the Israeli Declaration of Independence on 14 May that preceded the Nakba (‘the Catastrophe’, 15 May) where Palestinian people were ethnically cleansed from Palestine.

You can:
1) Write to the Doc Edge Fest and tell them why they shouldn’t break the boycott by showing this film, and taking money from Israel. Their email is info@docedge.nz – if you want some tips on what to write, check out the letter we sent.

2) Join us outside the Roxy at 8:15pm on Monday 14th to protest in solidarity with Palestinian people and  tell Doc Edge that it’s not ok to support apartheid. BYO own sign, warm clothes. We will have hot drinks, tunes and it’d be great to meet and talk about whats happening in Palestine.

nakba_day70Nakba Day – Tuesday May 15th

Nakba Day 2018 will mark the culmination of the ‘The Great March of Return‘ – six weeks of protest by the Palestinian people. The Israeli military has cracked down extremely hard on people during this time of protest, particularly those in Gaza, where unarmed people and people who weren’t even protesting have been shot and killed. Thousands have been injured by live fire, tear gas and rubber bullets.

Tensions will also be particularly high as the US Embassy is set to be moved to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv on the 14th May. According to Palestinian officials, this is “siding totally with Israeli annexation and Israeli cleansing of our people from Jerusalem”.

Come and say salaam aleikum to us on Tuesday for a casual lunch time solidarity action – we’ll be having some kōrero about Palestine, putting up posters, handing out zines, chalking and flying some Palestinian flags at these times:
– Cuba Mall at 12.30-1pm
– Midland Park 1.30-2pm

Wellington welcomes Palestinian author Dr. Ramzy Baroud

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Wellington Palestine are hosting Gaza-born Palestinian author Dr. Ramzy Baroud, who is visiting Wellington as part of a world tour to launch his new book: The Last Earth: A Palestinian Story.
There is a book reading and signing, at VicBooks Kelburn Campus bookstore on May 22nd at 12pm. Then later that same day at 7pm a book launch at St Andrews on the Terrace where the author will discuss the background to the book and his views on contemporary issues facing the Palestinian liberation movement.

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Peace groups remembered civilians at Anzac day events

Peace Action Wellington and friends joined Anzac day events in Wellington to remember civilian casualties of war. We called for an end to war, and honoured all civilians casualties with a respectful presence at the dawn service at Pukeahu and at the Wellington Citizens’ Wreath-laying Service at the Cenotaph.

“We laid a wreath for civilian casualties of war because all loss of life in war is abhorrent.” said spokesperson, Alex Davies. Peace Action Wellington laid a wreath alongside other peace groups who laid wreaths for conscientious objectors, the Afghan people killed in Operation Burnham, and the people killed by ANZAC soldiers in the Surafend Massacre in Palestine, 1918.

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“In the past four years we have seen an increasing obsession with Anzac day. This came to a head around the First World War centenary. Anzacs continue to be heavily romanticised as heroes and the protagonists of the historical New Zealand war narrative. However, selective commemoration can alter our view of history, and whose lives we deem to be important. On this day of remembrance it’s important we remember all aspects of war, including the civilian casualties and those that opposed it.”, said spokesperson, Alex Davies.

“We cannot separate commemorations of the past from the contemporary wars we participate in. Anzac day is a day to remember and reflect, we should be able to think critically and question how as a country we can be actively working towards peace.”, said Davies.

The government has finally begun an inquiry into the SAS lead Operation Burnham in Afghanistan and commemorations of the New Zealand Land Wars, both of which have only happened because citizens have stood up and requested it. Peace Action Wellington hopes that this reflection means we can move forward and actively work towards full demilitarisation.

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“When we laid our wreath we also remembered the more than 100,000 civilians that have died in Syria. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern misspoke when she said that New Zealand ‘accepted’ the bombing of Syria by the US, UK and France. Many New Zealanders would prefer that our country took a stand for peace and led the way on international demilitarisation and non-violent diplomacy.”, Davies said.

During her first foreign policy speech in February this year Ardern said that New Zealand, “Must recommit ourselves to the cause of non-proliferation and disarmament, and to the norms and rules which support those endeavours.” Actions speak louder than words, however. Peace Action Wellington calls on our government to end all New Zealand support and involvement in foreign conflicts including Afghanistan.

“When we say ‘Never again’, we should mean it.”, said Davies.

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How can we support peace in Syria?

There has been a lot of debate on the civil war in Syria.
Here is a statement on Peace Action Wellington’s position:

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Be actively pro-civilian
Recognise the right to self-determination – the war began as an uprising to overthrow Assad’s oppressive regime.
Support refugees in your communities! 5.5 million people have fled to find safety from the war in Syria and 6.3 million people are internally displaced.
Civilians account for 85% of people killed by explosive weapons in Syria.

Stay anti-Assad
The civil war began in 2011 as a popular uprising to overthrow the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad. He has done some h*ckin bad stuff and if you can’t find it, you can’t internet.

Oppose external/Western military intervention
The US, UK, France, Russia, Israel, Iran and Turkey have all been involved in the war in Syria – this has not helped to stabilise the situation for the Syrian people.
If other countries want to effect positive change they should focus on international demilitarisation and non-violent diplomacy.

It is important to acknowledge there is a diversity of opinions on the war both from within Syria as well as from the outside. There is also a h*ckload of misinformation out there which our media is doing little to dispel. Hold tight to your principles. #Peace

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Rally for Climate Justice!

On 26-28 March 2018 the oil and gas industry held its annual business conference. Where government ministers are lobbied, businesses network and oil and gas exploration permits are announced – even though we can’t use the oil we already know about. The main rally took place on Tuesday 27th March.

We joined Oil Free Wellington and a broad range of groups who’ve came from all over Aotearoa to protest the expansion of oil and gas in Aotearoa: Climate Justice Taranaki, Te Ara Whatu, Pacific Panthers, 350 Aotearoa, Auckland Peace Action, People Against Prisons Aotearoa, Oil Free Otago, Berrigan House, Coal Action Network Aotearoa, It’s Our Future Manawatu, Unite Union, Our Climate Declaration, Frack Free, Oil Free Otautahi, and Unions Wellington.

The Rally for Climate Justice called for the following:

1: To the government: Commit to no new permits, and stop all drilling and prospecting for oil and gas as part of a just transition for workers and communities.

2: To the oil and gas industries: Stop drilling and prospecting; clean up the damage you have caused and make amends to the communities you’ve harmed.

3: To the people: Join with us to stand up for climate justice – demand that global solutions to climate change centre on and support those who bear the brunt of it.

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