Action round-up from Faslane anti-nuke action month

Four Olympic Gold Medal Winners arrested at Faslane Naval Base on Monday 11th June!

The  four women from Glasgow and Edinburgh are members of the Gareloch Hortis peace group which was taking part in thirty days of actions to mark thirty years of Faslane Peace Camp’s protest against Trident nuclear weapons. The group staged the Peace Olympics with events as varied as synchronised swimming and putting the Haggis.

The medallists were arrested during the Tug of Peace across the North Gate of the base.

The event drew attention to the continued presence of the illegal and deadly weapons in Scotland, and all eight other nuclear nations. The winners’ podium highlighted that the only way to win the Race for Peace is to lay down the weapons of mass destruction.

 

Activists blockade Faslane Naval Base

19.6.2012

Today at 7 o’ clock in the morning activists of the Faslane Peacecamp blockaded the Trident Naval Base. Three people locked on in front of the South Gate. From the original five people at the North Gate two were arrested immediately while the rest were able to blockade one lane of the road. The blockade lasted about 90 minutes.



A spokesperson said on behalf of the Peace Camp: ” We are having this blockade today because we want to show our opposition against nuclear weapons. We express our fear and our anger in a nonviolent way. We ask the British government to listen to the opinion of the majority of Scottish people and MSP’s. The People do not want Trident! They do not want this base with it’s nuclear weapons in Scotland. Due to the fact that in the next few years Scottish independence may be achieved now is the time to put pressure upon the British government. Instead of starting to put money into a Trident replacement we want them to shut down the Faslane Naval Base and stop their nuclear weapons program.”

An international activist added: “This blockade was a very international one. People from all parts of Britain and activists from Spain and Sweden were involved. I think that it is my right and my duty as a global citizen to do nonviolent direct actions against nuclear weapons as long as our governments do not fulfill their duty and stop fighting wars. Nuclear weapons are illegal by international humanitarian law and I want all countries to respect this and make a step to a more peaceful world.”

This blockade is part of the 30 days of action from the 9th June to the 9th July. To find out more about what has happened and will happen in the future visit our blog.

http://faslanepeacecamp.wordpress.com/

Faslane Peace Campers Trespass at Coulport Nuclear Weapons Depot

15/06/2012

Angus Chalmers and Leonna O'Neill of Faslane Peace Camp entered RNAD Coulport in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

They left the camp on foot at approximately 10pm with the intentions of seeing how close they could get to Coulport under the cover of darkness. By the time they were approaching the outer fence perimeter the two still hadn't been apprehended or detected by security or any of the night vision cctv cameras, and so decided to continue to see how far luck (or the ineptitudes of the security system on what should be the most heavily guarded naval depot in the UK) would get them.

They decided to approach the Explosives Handling Jetty via the shore line and entered by wading water and climbing a razor wire fence. At this point they decided to walk visibly and announce themselves to the first police they saw. To their surprise they were met with zero security personnel and were able to access a jetty a matter of feet from the Explosives Handling Jetty where the Trident nuclear warheads are loaded to the Vangaurd submarines.

Angus climbed a further fence into the establishment setting off the bandit alarm and alerting the MOD security and cctv camera operators. Both were soon apprehended by MOD police and arrested and charged with miilitary by-laws and the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 (SOCPA). Both were held in custody until court on Thursday afternoon where the SOCPA charges were dropped and they pleaded not guilty to the by-laws charges.

Leonna and Angus said "This is evidence that the Couport Nuclear Weapons Depot is unsafe. The capacity for this technology to irreperably destroy life and the environment should be reason enough to ensure that it is safe guarded and protected in a way that does not allow for human error or complacency. The relative ease at which we were able to approach and enter Coulport on foot and the close proximatey we were able to get to the Explosives Handling Jetty is surprising and disturbing".

 

Faslane Peace Camp and Trident Ploughshares Trespass at Faslane Naval Base

2/07/2012

 
Seven activists from Faslane Peace Camp and Trident Ploughshares entered Faslane naval base this morning with four members of the group slipping past guards and reaching points up to 100 yards inside the base. A further two were arrested in the attempt.

At 7am this morning Faslane Peace Camp and Trident Ploughshares activists attended the North gate of the Faslane Naval Base to serenade the approaching morning shift staff with peace and nuclear disarmament songs. The act doubled as a ruse to enable fifteen of the group to attempt entering the base. One TP activist, Brian Larkin, succeeded in gaining entry to the base whilst the rest were prevented from doing so by Minitsry of Defence and Strathclyde police.

Brian was charged with breach of SOCPA, the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act, and miliatry by-laws and later released on an undertaking. Upon being released Larkin said “the serious organised crime happens inside the base and not in these actions for peace and disarmament. It is the ongoing deployment of Trident submarines – each carrying 48 warheads, eight times more destructive than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima which killed 200,000 people – that constitutes serious organised crime and violates every principle of humanity in international law.”

In a show of the same relentless persistence that has kept the Peace Camp and the anti-nuclear movement going over the years, the group later returned to make a second attempt at breaching the North Gate. Two were arrested during the attempt whilst six gained entry, four of which reaching up to 100 yards inside the base.

The bandit alarm was activated and the Naval Base was locked down, preventing traffic from entering the base and normal operations to continue within the base for 45 minutes. The action was part of the Peace Camp’s 30 Days of Action marking 30 years of continuous resistance to nuclear weapons at Faslane. Thirty people have been arrested in the campaign which began on 9 June. Nine people were arrested today.

It is not yet clear what the other eight will be charged with but a breach of SOCPA charge is likely in addition to breaching military by-laws. Angus Chalmers of the Fasland Peace Camp said “This land has been fenced and designated as a SOCPA area in order to make possible the serious crime of deploying Trident.” Margaret Bremner of the Trident Ploughshares Gareloch Horticulturalists affinity group added “We cross this line today to demonstrate that this land, this earth, does not belong to a state which is using it to threaten the destruction of the earth and all its peoples. We enter this gate in order to reclaim land for life not death.”

Each of those trespassing were carrying letters explaining the international illegality of nuclear weapons to present to workers inside the base. In 1996, the International Court of Justice wrote the advisory opinion that not only would the use of nuclear weapons be illegal but the very threat of use through deployment, maintenance and upgrade of nuclear weapons systems is in contravention to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.

Under the terms of the NPT which entered into force over forty years ago, the UK government is obligated to bring nuclear disarmament to completion. Instead the UK government has continued to maintain and is now upgrading its nuclear weapons system. The recent news that the MoD has awarded lucrative contracts to arms companies for the initial stages of a Trident replacement programme furthers this ongoing mockery of our international legal obligations.

As long as our government continues to fail in it’s obligation to make serious moves toward complete nuclear disarmament, members of Trident Plougshares and Faslane Peace Camp are committed to non-violent direct action to disrupt the deployment of these illegal and immoral weapons.

Further demonstrations are planned for the remainder of the thirty days of action which will finish on July 9th. Amongst other actions, there will be an academic seminar blockade on Friday and a Rebel Clown Army insurgence on Saturday. For more information on the 30Days Action Campaign contact the camp via  faslane30@gmail.com.

Faslane Peace Camp: 01436 820901 or 07511793227
Trident Ploughshares: Brian Larkin 07768 312676

For More information on
Trident Ploughshares see: www.tridentploughshares.org.uk
Faslane Peace Camp and 30 Days of Action see: http://faslanepeacecamp.wordpress.com/