The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and Stop the War Coalition are holding a march and rally in London on Saturday, 25 February, to mark the first anniversary of the invasion of Ukraine and make renewed calls for peace.

Assembling outside the BBC, Portland Place at 12 noon, the march will be followed by a rally at Trafalgar Square.

We’re demanding urgent peace talks to bring about an end to the killing and avert the risk of nuclear war. We oppose the Russian invasion and call on NATO to end its escalation of the conflict, and the UK government must prioritise a diplomatic solution to the war – instead of using it as a pretext for more military spending during a cost of living crisis.

Speakers include: Tariq Ali, writer & activist; Brian Eno, Stop the War President & musician; Claudia Webbe MP; Andrej Hunko, German MP (Die Linke); Emma Dent Coad, Labour group leader for Kensington & Chelsea Council; Lowkey, Stop the War Patron & musician; Lindsey German, Stop the War Convenor; Tom Unterrainer, CND Chair; Lord John Hendy KC; Andrew Murray, Stop the War Deputy President; Martin Kavanagh, PCS Deputy President; Carlos Barros, RMT NEC member; and Mohammad Asif, Afghan Human Rights Foundation. Rally chaired by Kate Hudson, CND, and Shelly Asquith, Stop the War.

With statements from Yurii Sheliazhenko, Ukrainian Pacifist Movement; Oleg Bodrov, Russian physicist and peace activist; and Clare Daly MEP.

The demonstration is one of hundreds of protests taking place in towns, cities, and capitals across Europe – calling for immediate diplomatic talks and for our respective governments to back peace instead of prolonging the conflict by pouring more heavy weaponry into Ukraine.

CND General Secretary Kate Hudson said:

“Nuclear dangers have grown enormously in the last year and world leaders are refusing to put their foot on the brake. As we mark the first anniversary of this awful war, voices across Europe are growing to demand dialogue and peace. Our government should heed that call and stop pouring fuel on the fire .”

Stop the War Convenor, Lindsey German, said:

“The overwhelming need now is for peace in Ukraine. The war has already seen terrible loss of life and destruction. If escalation continues it will only worsen with the growing threat of wider war and nuclear conflict. Putin’s invasion must be condemned but we also should condemn the warmongering of NATO and the British government which prevented peace talks last year.”

Stop the War President and musician, Brian Eno said:

“What we’re seeing now won’t be a war between Russia and Ukraine. It’s between the US and Russia, with us dragged in on their coattails. The only sane alternative is negotiation. We have to get peace talks underway. That’s what we’ll be urging on Saturday.”

Notes to editors

A petition launched in Germany last week calling on Chancellor Olaf Scholz to lead talks on a peace deal has reached over half a million signatures. German MP Andrej Hunko will be in London from Friday and is available to speak on this issue. Contact Interview with other speakers available upon request.