Friday, March 21, 2008

UK POLICE BAN PEACE ACTIVIST FILM

Just read this on the SCIP (community e-group) list. Fucking hell. I find this extremely worrying. PRESS RELEASE MONDAY MARCH 17th 6 p.m EMBARGO: IMMEDIATE RELEASE WWW.SMASHEDO.ORG.UK <http://www.smashedo.org.uk/> For more info contact Chloe Marsh or Andrew Beckett on 07875 708873 POLICE BAN PEACE ACTIVIST FILM In a last-minute move Sussex Police have caused the Duke of York's Cinema to cancel the showing of 'On the Verge' a documentary about local peace campaigners SMASH EDO. The screening was due to be at 6.30pm tonight (Monday March 17th) According to the Duke of York's cinema they received an e-mail at 4.15 p.m today (Mon March 17th) from Martin New , a council environmental health officer. He explained that the police had reported that the film had not been certificated and therefore should not be shown. The Duke of York's were forced to pull the showing. A spokesman for the production company SchMovies said "I am extremely disappointed but not entirely surprised by the police's action. As the showing of the film has been widely advertised for at least six weeks, not least in the Duke of York's programme any certification issues could have been dealt with well prior to the event. Our film although focussing mainly on the rights and wrongs of protest shows a number of examples of questionable police behaviour Perhaps this is why they left their move so late." Andrew Beckett, spokesman for the campaign said 'When the police are reduced to banning film showings via the back door another blow has been struck against our rights to free speech and free assembly' Contacts: Smash EDO Press 07875 708873 Duke of Yorks Cinema 01273 818549 Sussex Police Press Office 0845 60 70 999 Notes for Journalists: THE FILM On the Verge "An independent film about the SMASH EDO Campaign " View a trailer at http://www.schnews.org.uk/schmovies/index-on-the-verge.htm In 2004 a group of Brighton peace campaigners began to bang pot and pans outside their local arms manufacturers EDO MBM in disgust of their part in the Iraq war. This has grown into the Smash EDO campaign, which has cost the company millions, been the subject of large scale police operations and has tested the right to protest in the UK.Using activist, police and CCTV footage plus interviews with those involved in the campaign, 'On The Verge' tells the story of one of the most persistent and imaginative campaigns to emerge out of the UK's anti-war movement and direct action scene.รข?? The Company EDO MBM Technologies Ltd are the sole UK subsidiary of huge U.S weapons manufacturer EDO Corp.From their base in Moulescoombe Brighton, EDO MBM manufacture vital parts for the Hellfire and Paveway weapons systems,laserguided missilesused extensively in Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine and Somalia. EDO Corp were recently acquired by ITT in multi-billion pound deal. ITT's links to fascism go back to the 1930s. The founder Sosthenes Behn was the first foreign businessman received by Hitler after his seizure of power. The Campaign There has been active campaign against the presence of EDO MBM in Brighton since the outbreak of the Iraq war. Campaigners include students, Quakers , Palestine solidarity activists, anti-capitalists and academics. Despite an injunction under the protection of harassment act (which failed) and over forty arrests the campaign is still going strong.Their avowed aim is to expose EDO MBM and their complicity in war crimes and to removethem from Brighton. They hold regular weekly demos outside the Moulescoombe factory on Wednesday's between 4 and 6.

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