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Activists in court for Day X protest at outbreak of war

Manos | 30.06.2003 17:19 | Anti-militarism | Repression | Cambridge

Four anti-war activists are appearing in Lion Yard Magistrates Court, Cambridge, this week for taking part in protests at the outbreak of war on Iraq.

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1800hrs, Monday 30 June 2003


Four anti-war activists are appearing in Lion Yard Magistrates Court,
Cambridge, this week for taking part in protests at the outbreak of war on
Iraq. Over 300 people blocked the Catholic Church junction, at the
intersection of Hills Rd and Lensfield Rd, on 20 March in a protest that
lasted several hours. The Day X protest was part of a nationwide day of
civil disobedience on the first day of war. Three of the activists are
charged with wilful obstruction of a public highway, and one with
assaulting a police officer. All have entered not guilty pleas.

Twelve police officers including two senior officers are appearing as
witnesses, commenting among other things on issues of police conduct and
brutality during the protest. The case will raise substantial issues as to
the legality of war, as well as the use of the public highway for protest.

Mika Minio-Paluello, one of those on trial, said:
"The war on Iraq, as we're now finding out, was both a humanitarian
disaster and based on lies."

Amelia Bercusson, who was also at the protest, said:
"We signed petitions, we wrote letters to MPs, we marched in Cambridge,
we marched in London - two million of us - and still Tony Blair
did not listened. Still he chose to wage an illegal, immoral, and
unnecessary war. In those circumstances, how could ordinary life just go

The trial continues at Lion Yard Magistrates Court, Cambridge, from 9.30am

Notes for editors:

1. Out of the 24 arrests on the day, 13 were charged, with most of those
charged receiving cautions.

2. Iraq Body Count, the worldwide update of reported civilian deaths in
the war on Iraq, currently estimates that between 6,011 and 7,653
civilians have died as a result of the conflict. See

3. The honesty of UK and US government claims about Iraq's WMD
capabilities has been called into question in recent weeks. For a summary
of the main unanswered questions, see Dr Glen Rangwala's article in the
Independent on Sunday, 29 June 2003, at

4. The situation in Iraq is far from stable, with a coalition soldier
being killed on average every day.

5. CamSAW was founded as a response to the events of September 11 and the
resulting 'war on terror' and attack on Afghanistan. With the current
situation in Iraq, and the possibility of further conflicts, this
coalition of students from Cambridge University, APU and local higher
education and sixth form colleges will remain. See .



Display the following 2 comments

  1. Body count — A.Oto
  2. democracies are better than dictatorships — Mr Tops