Raytheon Out of Derry - vigil
anti-war / imperialism |
Thursday July 31, 2008 17:45 by DAWC - Derry Anti War Coalition (DAWC)
Members of the Derry Anti War Coalition marked the second anniversary of the massacre at Qana in Lebanon with a vigil at the Derry Raytheon plant on Wednesday.
The anti-war group carried posters with pictures of the victims of the bombing. The names of the victims were read out by local journalist and activist Eamonn McCann, one of the Raytheon 9.
In a statement afterwards, DAWC chair Eileen Webster said: “It was the Israeli bombing of a civilian target at Qana which prompted the occupation of the Raytheon plant. The fact that it was a Raytheon ‘bunker-buster’ which crushed or choked to death 28 innocent people, half of them children, made the company, including its Derry facility, complicit in a crime against humanity.
“This was the basis of the defence which the DAWC members put before the Crown Court in Belfast . The court accepted this defence and found that the action of the Raytheon 9 was not a crime but an attempt to prevent crime.
“It has been a source of frustration to us that no media outlet has provided its readers, listeners or viewers with a straightforward account of why the Nine were acquitted. Questions should be asked about this.
“It was crucial to the defence case that the Derry plant---not just the Raytheon company internationally---was involved in aiding and abetting crimes under international humanitarian law. This finding has not been reported anywhere. No party represented on Derry City Council has acknowledged the finding, much less drawn a conclusion from it.
“We say that the time has now come to end this shameful silence. Raytheon should be told to get out of Derry .
“We call on rank-and-file members and supporters of the SDLP, Sinn Fein, the DUP and the Ulster Unionists to tell their leaders to tell this company that it is not welcome here.
“This is not a local issue but a national and international issue. The arms trade fuels war for profit. Opponents of the arms trade everywhere in the world will be boosted if Derry tells Raytheon to get out.
“As we said outside the court at the close of the Raytheon 9 trial, the people of Lebanon are our neighbours. Their children are the children of our neighbours. We cannot give them back the lives which were crushed out by a Raytheon weapon. The most we can do and the least we can do is to take a stand against the company which supplied the death machine which killed them, and which continues to supply Israel with the means to massacre Lebanese, Palestinian and other peoples.
“We in Derry should remember the names of those who died at Qana on July 30th 2006. They were: Ahmad Mahmud Shaloub, 55; Ibrahim Hashim, 65; Hasna Hashim, 75; Ali Ahmad Hashim, 3; Abbas Ahmad Hashim, 9 months; Hura Muhammad Qassim Shaloub, 12; Mahdi Mahmud Hashim, 68; Zahra Muhammad Qassim Shaloub, 12; Ibrahim Ahmad Hashim, 7; Jafar Mahmud Hashim, 10; Lina Muhammad Mahmud Shaloub, 30; Nabila Ali Amin Shaloub, 40; Ula Ahmad Mahmud Shaloub, 25; Khadija Ali Yusif, 31; Taysir Ali Shaloub, 39; Zaynab Muhammad Ali Amin Shaloub, 6; Fatima Muhammad Hashim, 4; Ali Ahmad Mahmud Shaloub, 17; Maryam Hassan Muhsin, 30; Afaf al-Zabad, 45; Yahya Muhammad Qassim Shaloub, 9; Ali Muhammad Kassim Shaloub, 10; Yusif Ahmad Mahmud Shaloub, 6; Qassim Samih Shaloub, 9; Hussain Ahmad Hashim, 12; Qassim Muhammad Shaloub, 7; Raqiyya Mahmud Shaloub, 7; Raqiyya Muhammad Hashim, age unknown.
NOTE: the vigil was held instead of the march called for Sat 2nd August. The march was called off as so many people across the North, including DAWC members, wanted to attend the Gay Pride march in Belfast on Sat to call for the resignation of Iris Robinson.