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Blood Offering Links GCSB to Drone Killings

Blood Offering Links GCSB to Drone Killings

Press Release: Drone Assassination Awareness Week

3 March 2017

At lunchtime today, 7 people poured their blood on the ground at the entrance to the Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB) in Thorndon, Wellington.

This action was the culmination of Drone Assassination Awareness Week, during which a group have been fasting and praying for the civilian victims of US military drone strikes. The seven people placed pictures of drone strike victims on the floor of the GCSB, poured their own blood out, and prayed for those victims, and the staff of the GCSB who are helping the US drone programme.

"We know two things: one, that the US drone strikes have killed thousands of civilians in muslim-majority countries, and two, that the GCSB, as an active partner in the 5 Eyes global surveillance network is contributing signals intelligence to the US, which can be used to support the US killer drone programme. In other words, our defence force is part of the kill chain which makes up the drone assassination programme. Assassination is outside our domestic laws, defence policy, and international law. The GCSB has assured us that they operate within NZ policies and laws, but won't reveal any of their operational details. The last time the GCSB assured us that their secret activity was lawful, they lied: they were spying on NZ citizens while denying it at the same time. Their credibility is very low." Says spokesperson Adrian Leason.

"When military drones shoot hellfire missiles at families in their garden, we are moved to pray for them, and to act in their defence. We are inspired by Pope Francis, who says that violence is not the cure for a broken world. He is urging all of us to pursue peace more urgently, by non-violent means."

"Our action today - giving our blood to the GCSB - is as act of propitiation to the powerful who take life. If the GCSB want to take muslim blood, we say: 'take our blood instead'."

"We demand a full review of NZ's contribution to the 5-Eyes network, and the support that we may be giving to the drone assassination programme. We also ask that the GCSB make public all their files from 1987 to 2007. We appreciate the need for operational secrecy, so they can keep the last ten years up to the present under wraps. But scrutiny of their historic files cannot compromise their current operations."

"If the GCSB have done nothing wrong, then they have nothing to fear in releasing their historic files."

"During the week of fasting and vigil-ling we have received amazing support from our parishes, supporters, and members of the public. Kiwis are horrified to learn that our defence force could be contributing to the evil that is drone assassinations." Says Mr Leason.

ends

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