Edinburgh CND News 23rd November

Tuesday 6th of December with our AGM and winter social. 6pm at the Peace and Justice Centre (all welcome).

+++++++++RIC meeting: Campaigning Against the Arms Trade
Wednesday 30 November 2016 7.00pm Augustine United Church, George 1V Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL
+++++++++SACC anti-islamaphobia conference: Saturday 3rd 11 AM – 5pm
Augustine United Church 41-43 George IV Bridge, EH1 1EL Edinburgh, United Kingdom (also Cranes Workshop 2pm at the Peace and Justice centre)

1. As the Chancellor Philip Hammond set out continuing cuts to public spending and increased debt, CND has released a new report making the economic case against Trident replacement. The People/Jobs not Trident report sets out what the £205 billion the Government plans to spend on a new generation of nuclear weapons could fund instead.
Employ 150,000 new nurses and build 120 state of the art hospitals
Build three million affordable homes
Provide short-term shelter for all in need
Reinstate Education Maintenance Allowance
Provide tuition free education for 7.5 million undergraduates
Build thousands of new primary schools
Install solar panels in every home
Build enough wind turbines to power every home in the UK
Increased funding for overseas development
You can use the CND website to send a copy of the report to your
Kate Hudson, CND general secretary, said:
“Our report sets out how the new Chancellor can right the wrong that is being done. It contains an alternative set of spending proposals that can address the real problems our society now faces. Whether that’s creating new jobs, investment in the NHS, building homes or the creation of education opportunities that young people deserve.”
The report was launched in Parliament by a cross-party group of MPs including Caroline Lucas, Kelvin Hopkins and Margaret Ferrier.

2. Despite the British government’s best attempts, the United Nations has adopted a resolution agreeing to convene a conference in March 2017 to negotiate a global nuclear ban treaty. 123 countries voted in favour, with only 38 voting against. Those opposed included the UK, the USA, France, Israel and Russia. North Korea voted in favour of the ban conference. The other nuclear states (India, Pakistan and China) abstained. The UK government has repeatedly said that it shares CND’s goal of a nuclear weapons free world, but insists this can only be achieved through a multilateral process. This process is now beginning and the government needs to be a constructive part of it – not trying to derail it. It is vital that Britain is at the table. The international community has united before to ban biological and chemical weapons, land mines and cluster bombs. As the majority of the world is covered by nuclear weapons free zones anyway, a global ban treaty seems like the next logical step. Over 2000 CND supporters have already written to the Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson. Thank you to everyone who got involved – this ensured that the issue is definitely on his agenda. And now we’ll be building on this campaign to make sure the UK is represented at the talks. Parliamentary CND will be writing to political parties encouraging them to send representatives to the negotiations and to the Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee asking for evidence sessions on the issue. We cannot let the UK refuse to participate in this crucial conference – we need to get them round the negotiating table. The British government should rethink its approach and support and participate in the UN global ban conference in 2017.
Conference on Humanitarian and Environmental Impact Responsibilities of Hosting Nuclear Weapons
Friday 9 December 9.30am – 5.30pm. Scottish Parliament
The event is being hosted by the United Nations Association Scotland, UNA Edinburgh, UN House, the Cross Party Group on Nuclear Disarmament, and the Acronym Institute for Disarmament Diplomacy. Please see the programme attached to this email.
In order to attend, you must register through the following link before December 5th: http://peaceandjustice.us7.list-manage1.com/track/click?u=6e39b7d66c916d69d27cb405f&id=7304d22fd2&e=c2ba2454a5
CND have loads of new and updated materials including leaflets and booklets on Trident, the global ban, NATO, drones etc. For more information or to place an order, please see conduce website.

3. Did you know that trucks carrying nuclear warheads frequently travel across the country? They pass close to towns, villages, schools, hospitals and they may even be passing through your area without you ever knowing it. A recent opinion poll showed that 80% of the population are unaware of the convoys. That’s why CND is calling on our supporters to take part in the nuclear convoys constituency lobby by talking to their MP about this important subject. We need to raise awareness and continue the campaign to make sure these dangerous convoys are taken off the road as quickly as possible. Friday 25 – Saturday 26 November
Read report: Nukes of Hazard – the nuclear bomb convoys on our roads
Book a meeting: use our lobby tool to meet your MP
Let us know about your meeting or get advice by emailing parliamentary@cnduk.org

Edinburgh CND expressed it’s concern over the lack of Labour MPs signing EDM 577 Nuclear Convoys. As of 9.11.2016 3 Labour MPs had signed, 2 SDLP. One Mark Durkan being a sponsor of the motion, 1 Green, Sponsor of the motion, 3 Plaid Cymru, 2 Scottish Independent and 29 SNP MPs. Note two of the Labour MPs constituencies are on or close to convoy routes. We are currently urging our members to Lobby their MPs to sign this motion.

4. This Thursday, the Scotland Parliament’s Public Petitions Committee may make a decision on whether or not to take forward the proposals made by ForcesWatch and Quakers in Scotland.Our proposals call for greater scrutiny and transparency around these visits, guidance being provided to schools to ensure balance and accuracy in the information and views provided.
Numerous organisations and Local Authorities have submitted responses to the Committee, including Scotland’s Children Commissioner, Tam Baillie, who said: ‘There should be clear national guidance about the content of such visits and when and where they are to be conducted…. I am particularly keen, for example, to ensure that young people living in more deprived areas are not disproportionately targeted by such visits.’ You can read the responses here. (See Petitioner Letter of 11 November for the final response from Quakers in Scotland and ForcesWatch).
Forces Watch will be present in the Parliament from 10am
Concurrently with the Petitions Committee inquiry, a motion has been tabled in Holyrood by Christina McKelvie, about the recruitment agenda behind armed forces visits to schools, and about a public health report on the UK armed forces’ recruitment of minors. This report, by global public health charity Medact, looks at the psychological and psychosocial vulnerabilities of adolescents in the context of military recruitment marketing strategies and making long-term risky decisions; and examines the evidence that under 18 recruits face greater risks to health than adult recruits, across the course of an armed forces career. In summary, the report calls for the recruitment age to be raised to 18.
Please do ask your local MSP to sign this motion! You can find the contact information on this page, and see below for some information you might wish to send to them in your personalised message asking them to sign.
If you are interested in getting involved in local advocacy work in Scotland about armed forces recruitment, please do get in touch, so we can link you to others and see how we can support this work. A new working group is starting up in Edinburgh to campaign around military visits to schools and the recruitment of young people into the armed forces, and they will be holding a meeting on 12 December at the Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre from 6-8pm.
There is also an Early Day Motion (694) before the UK Parliament. Please ask your MP to sign:
That this House notes the contents of the Medact Report into the effects of the recruitment of minors by the UK armed forces, published in October 2016; further notes the report’s findings that child recruits are more vulnerable to post-traumatic stress disorder, alcohol abuse, self-harm, suicide, death and injury during an armed forces career when compared to either their demographically-matched civilian peers or adult recruits; notes that the report concludes that the current practices for recruiting minors into the UK armed forces do not meet the criteria for full and informed consent, in part due to the fact that adolescents’ cognitive and psychosocial development make them unfairly susceptible to military recruitment marketing; notes that the report’s conclusion states that those recruited as children, on turning 18, are more likely than adult recruits to end up in frontline combat roles which carry greater risks than other roles; recalls the repeated condemnation of UK armed forces’ recruitment of minors by national child rights experts and the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child and the Deepcut Review’s recommendation that the minimum enlistment age should be reviewed; notes the growing body of independent research evidencing significant detrimental outcomes for the youngest recruits; and calls on the Government to launch a review of the minimum armed forces enlistment age.

5. The British Government unilateral decided to deny the Chagossians the right to return to live in the Chagos. https://www.theguardian.com/…/chagos-islanders-cannot-retur…
See our Facebook page for copy of the official communique of the mauritian Government and a letter to contact the African Commission on Nuclear Energy which is an outcome of LALIT’s Second Conference on Diego garcia

Other events:
1. Prisoners for Peace: Letter Writing Thursday 1 December. 11am – 1pm.
Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre 5 Upper Bow, Edinburgh EH1 2JN
Each year on 1st December the Peace and Justice Centre joins with War Resisters’ International to mark Prisoners for Peace Day, All invited to join us at the Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre on 1 December from 11am – 1pm to write a letter or card to a peace prisoner. We will provide details of prisoners, paper and cards and suggested guidelines for what to write and what not to write.

2. Youth and Student CND rally Thursday 24th November 6.30pm
The Venue, Student Central, Malet Street, London

News from other organisations:

1. Drone Campaign November Newsletter: https://dronecampaignnetwork.wordpress.com

2. Los Alamos Study Special Post-Election Bulletin 225: President-Elect Trump; letter to colleagues in government http://lasg.org/wordpress/

3. The Nonlethal Security for Peace Campaign Newsletter – November 2016
website: http://www.nonlethalsecurityforpeace.com

4. We also have an update from our friends in Australia https://walkingforcountry.com/walkatjurra-walkabout/walkatjurra-walkabout-updates/

5. The monthly Glasgow vigil held by the Scottish Peace Network will take place on Thursday, November 24 from 5 to 6 pm at the Dewar’s statue on Buchanan Street in Glasgow city centre. We will bring a banner, placards and flyers. ALSO: Spirit of Revolt – Archives of Dissent Raffle prizes request plus letter to Jeremy Corbyn re white poppies

6. Lacuna Magazine – http://www.lacuna.org.uk/
A Very British Scandal:
A 7-part special series investigating the realities behind the Iraq allegations.
Government and media have denied, dismissed and derided allegations of abuse by British soldiers in Iraq. And yet despite all the political and media pressure the Iraq allegations haven’t gone away. Lacuna tells the story as you haven’t heard it before.

7. Café Palestine
Sunday 27 November. 4pm. Edinburgh Peace and Justice Centre
Speaker: Nick Evans who visited the West bank for the first time earlier this year. His talk will be based on his first impressions as a professional town planner.

8. Edinburgh STW supports SACC conference “Islamophobia Conference 2016: The Environment of Hate and the Police State” at the Augustine Church, Saturday 3 Dec, organised jointly by SACC and IHRC (Islamic Human Rights Commission).

++++9.Uniting for Peace Interfaith Event Globalisation – Faith and Peace
Saturday 26 Nov. 7:15 – 9:15pm Exploring Implications of a Globalised World for Faith and Peace Speakers: Imam Hassan Rabbani (Annandale St Mosque)
Prof Paul Weller (Oxford & Coventry Universities)

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