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Between June 2 and 6 the Eurosatory Arms Fair will take place at Le Bourget near Paris. Over 800 arms companies will be meeting to sell weaponry to over 130 countries. Adverts for Eurosatory claim that it is "the worldwide rendezvous for land and air-land defense professionals." The European Network Against Arms Trade (in which the Green Group in the European Parliament has been an active participant for years) and a coalition of French peace organizations are calling for a protest against this international arms fair. The protest will be making three demands:
1. Stop all arms sales to repressive regimes and regions of tension.
2. Close down Eurosatory.
3. Retrain military export workers for civil production.
The protest, to take place over three days, will include a peaceful vigil, a mass demonstration and non-violent direct action.
The program is as follows:
- June 1: Arrival and Non-violence training
- June 2: Protest at the main gate of the arms fair and Non-violent Direct Action
- June 3: Day of Action in Paris
What can you do:
- Support the protest in financial terms: please submit your donation to Postbank 7818472 (ENAAT EUROSATORY CAMPAIGN Amsterdam, Netherlands) and/or
- Participate in Paris: please send your name and full address to ENAAT, Pesthuislaan 39, 1054 RH Amsterdam (E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org)
If you are a Green Minister, MP, MEP or otherwise a Green Party representative you might be interested to take part in the campaign as a politician, in particular on June 2 at the main gate of the arms fair. In that case please make contact as soon as possible with Ernst Guelcher (Green Group in the European Parliament-Peace and Disarmament) through his E-mail: email@example.com (+32-2-2843613, fax: 2842026) and/or make contact directly with Emma Rigby of the European Council for Quaker Affairs through her E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org (+32-2-2304935). Emma will be responsible in Paris for coordination for the political participants in the campaign and to help politicians with information and logistics to make the best of their participation.
I hope that at least one representative of every Green Party in Europe will participate in the campaign. Arms exports are still a very delicate political issue and the Greens have always been in the forefront of the campaign against them. Hope to see you there! Please let me know soon ...