Activists gather to shut down Weapons Expo

Published: Mon 9 Oct 2017 08:16 AM
Activists gather to shut down Weapons Expo
October 9, 2017
Peace activists have announced their plans to blockade the annual NZDIA Weapons Expo tomorrow (10th October 2017). Groups from all over the country are gathering to shut down the Expo, held this year at the Wellington Westpac Stadium.
“The Weapons Expo is a trade fair for major weapons companies, including Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Thales and Northrup Grumman. These companies are coming here to cash in on war and disaster. We will disrupt their business using tactics of non-violent direct action,” said Peace Action Wellington spokesperson Jessie Dennis.
“We witness the strife of war from our screens, we know it’s bad, but it’s important to act and to target the drivers of war, those who make billions of dollars from killing people. Tomorrow is our opportunity to shut down their business, to mess with their profit and to ultimately make the world a better and safer place.
“We invite people in Wellington to come to the Westpac Stadium tomorrow and join us in taking a stand against war. We can promise food, music and entertainment.
“It’s time the government recognised that the money spent on ‘defence’ could be better spent on reducing the disgraceful levels of child poverty in this country, or on addressing the housing crisis.”
Groups including Auckland Peace Action, Peace Action Hamilton, People Against Prisons Aotearoa, Palestine Solidarity Network, Whanganui Positive Activists, It’s Our Future Manawatu, Oil Free Wellington, Unions Wellington, Pacific Panthers, Quakers, Catholic Workers and many other individual social justice activists will join the blockade.
“A blockade of the Expo in Auckland was highly successful in disrupting the conference last year, and reflects a resurgence of the peace movement in Aotearoa during a period of global uncertainty” said Dennis.
“People ask us ‘how will we defend ourselves from North Korea without investing in defence?’ We'd argue that the race to militarise has got the world into this volatile situation - it’s unlikely that further militarisation will alleviate it.
“No one should profit from suffering and violence. War starts here - we can stop it here.”

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