CND has expressed its outrage at attempts to prevent anti-war protestors from demonstrating in Whitehall during the visit of George W. Bush this Sunday.
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, Stop the War Coalition and British Muslim Initiative have called a protest in Parliament Square for 5pm on Sunday. The protest will tell Bush that as a war criminal, responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands, he is not welcome here.
But Police have told protestors that they will not be allowed into Whitehall to demonstrate at Downing Street, where Bush is expected to have dinner with Gordon Brown.
CND believes that the British government is allowing security operations to be directed by White House officials. Previous demonstrations have been allowed along Whitehall whilst the Prime Minister is in Downing Street, but Bush’s presence means protesters are to be banned from a police ‘exclusion zone’.
The three organisations are demanding their right to protest at Downing Street.
Kate Hudson, CND chair, said: “Previous attempts to deprive us of our rights to protest have come to nothing. In February 2003 we were told we couldn’t go on the grass in Hyde Park and what happened? Two million people joined us in Hyde Park to oppose the war on Iraq. Last October we were told we couldn’t protest in Parliament Square to demand the withdrawal of British troops. What happened then? The morning of the protest we were given the go-ahead. We have a proud record of peaceful democratic protest and we mean to continue – lift the ban now. ”
Notes to Editors:
For further information and interviews please contact Ben Soffa, CND’s Press Officer, on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859
The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) is one of Europe’s biggest single-issue peace campaigns, with over 35,000 members in the UK. CND campaigns for the abolition of all nuclear weapons everywhere.