Dé Céadaoin, Bealtaine 12, 2010

Up In Court for Saving Lives


Lunacy continues unabated in the six-county justice system as we see people up in court for protesting against companies complicit in war crimes. Currently 14 people from Derry, 9 women and 5 men, are facing criminal charges for nothing more than taking part in a protest against Raytheon and their involvement in the manufacture of weapons used by states guilty of war crimes and human rights abuses.

One of the most notable of these states is Israel. This is a state with a record of decades of brutality against the Palestinian people and an illegal military occupation of their homeland. They bulldoze Palestinian homes to make way for Israeli settlements and violate many statutes of international law including The Charter of the United Nations, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, The Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhumane or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, The Convention on the Rights of the Child. They have also been found to be in violation of 28 resolutions of the UN Security Council and almost 100 resolutions of the UN General Assembly.

Their brutality knows no bounds and in late December 2008, they launched a horrific three week long military assault on the people of Gaza leaving 1,400 Palestinian's dead including at least 400 children and 100 women. With the help of Raytheon's weapons, they decimated Gaza's infrastucture, bombed homes, schools, hospitals and UN compounds. Raytheon's weapons delivery systems helped Israel bombard Gaza with white phosphorous, the horrific results of which were beamed around the world on TV. All actions which heard countless cries for Israel to be tried for war crimes.

Raytheon are complicit in these war crimes. Their weapons delivery systems and missiles are used world wide by many other brutal regimes in their human rights abuses.

The 9 women and 5 men from Derry in their non-violent, direct action against Raytheon in the Derry plant in January 2009, were doing no more than trying to save innocent lives and halt the war machine which Raytheon is part of. Such action against those involved or complicit in war crimes should be commended. Likewise, the 14 individuals from Derry who protested against Raytheon should be commended and supported during their impending court case. The bottom line is it is the likes of Raytheon who should be on trail, not these brave men and women.

Show your support for the 14 Raytheon Accused and join the protest outside Crown Court, Belfast on the day their trial begins, on Monday 17th May 2010. Protest begins 9am.

For more information on the 14 Raytheon Accused click here.

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