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Peace Action to stop the weapons conference

Media Release: Peace Action to stop the weapons conference
Date: Monday, 16 October 2006
From: Peace Action Wellington

People from all over Wellington will be marching to stop the weapons conference due to happen at Te Papa on Tuesday and Wednesday this week. A colourful march will leave Pigeon Park (Te Aro Park) at 12 noon on Tuesday and go to the forecourt of Te Papa.

‘Weapons manufacturers from 200 of the world’s largest weapons manufacturers are meeting at our national museum for the annual NZ Defence Industry Association conference, we want to give them a strong message that those who profit from bloodshed and war are not welcome here’ said Valerie Morse, member of Peace Action Wellington, one of the groups organising the activities tomorrow.

‘Te Papa is not an appropriate venue for such a conference. It has a statutory responsibility to ensure that ‘it is a place of pride for all New Zealanders’ but how can people be proud of a place that hosts weapons manufacturers?’

‘Peace Action Wellington is deeply concerned about the Labour Party’s support for the development of a weapons industry. Auckland-based company, Rakon, has been given over $600,000 in government money in the past 5 years. This is the company that makes parts for US guided ‘smart bombs’ that have been used in Iraq and Lebanon. The government is giving material support to these illegal wars by helping to supply their militaries. We think that is abhorrent.’

‘We are not going to stand by and let these merchants of death meet at Our Place. We welcome all forms of resistance to the conference. There will be music and food on the forecourt and we encourage people to bring friends and family along to join in the peace action.’

More information about the weapons industry can be found at www.peacewellington.tk

ENDS

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