London Indymedia

remember saro-wiwa

rikki | 10.11.2005 01:05 | Rossport Solidarity | Ecology | Indymedia | Social Struggles | London

in november 1995, nigerian writer and activist, ken saro-wiwa, and 8 of his colleagues were executed by the military regime for campaigning against the devastation of the niger delta by oil multi-national shell. yesterday, demonstrators dropped nine nooses infront of the shell uk headquarters on the south bank to highlight the anniversary and highlight the current struggle on the north west of ireland, where shell is set to transform a remote conservation area into an environmental disaster zone with public health and safety implications.


9 nooses
9 nooses

stop (s)hell banner
stop (s)hell banner

noose sillhouhette
noose sillhouhette

banner and reflection
banner and reflection

terry clancey from rossport solidarity camp
terry clancey from rossport solidarity camp

let me make a note
let me make a note

pipeline of hell
pipeline of hell

(s)hell building
(s)hell building

nooses down
nooses down

protest round the front of shell
protest round the front of shell

tiny but loud samba
tiny but loud samba

bridge banner
bridge banner

rubens sponsorship
rubens sponsorship

inside rubens exhibition
inside rubens exhibition

outside rubens exhibition
outside rubens exhibition

shortly after midday, climbers scaled the lampposts outside the shell hq buildings on the south bank, and dropped the nine nooses from a line between the posts. other protestors arrived with huge banners, a megaphone and leaflets, along with a tiny but noisy samba band.

the action soon attracted the local security teams, a couple of overwhelmed community support officers, and then various police. police used the new 'serious organised crime act' legislation which prohibits "unauthorised demonstrations' within an exclusion zone around parliament. at first they claimed that the protestors could not demonstrate anywhere near to the shell building, but after being shown a map of the exclusion zone, conceded that the action could continue on york road at the front of the building.

they handed out many leaflets and educated passers-by of the real un-'greenwashed' reality of shell. one of the participants was terry clancey who is visiting from the irish rossport solidarity group. he will be speaking at an event at rampart on saturday.

after a pause for some late lunch, it was off to the national gallery, where shell is currently sponsoring a rubens exhibition. visitors are charged £7.50 - £9 for entrance, but shell offer free tickets to their special guests, and have held at least two banquets in the building, surrounded by the classic art of rubens. as business men are treated to this sumptuous private exhibition, you can begin to see why shell are so keen to sponsor this kind of thing - it fits in neatly with their greenwash slogan of 'profit AND principles'.

for further info:
on shell generally
on the struggle in ireland
on shell art sponsorship
on protest restrictions

to contact the uk solidarity campaign

there will be a video of the day's protests posted later.

there is a rossport irish solidarity event at rampart next saturday with speakers, videos and music - more info on indymedia elswhere, and i'll post more details of this with the video.



Hide the following 4 comments

Respect and thanks

10.11.2005 16:21

for a brilliantly imaginative action. It would be a shame to let the name of Ken Sarowiwa fade from people's memories.


video now posted

11.11.2005 18:30

video of the london anti-shell actions on 9th november


Rubens' 'Massacre of the Innocets' Sponsered by Shell

11.11.2005 21:25

Yes Shell are actully sponsering a painting called ' 'Massacre of the Innocets' pretty disgusting.

Have a go.. make your own version.. Ther are still plenty of topics.. floods...war....storms...repression...

Mr Rubens

Shell non-executive director on board of National Gallery

26.11.2005 19:38


Just wanted to pass on this updated list with info interestingly left off the National Gallery's own website descriptions, ie. that Lord Kerr is on the board of Shell, (sponsor of Rubens exhibition). Looks like we have no chance with Jon Snow if he's sitting alongside Kerr at every meeting!

Anyone feel like trawling the web for addresses for this lot so we can send them a Christmas card from the Niger Delta or County Mayo?

Lord Kerr of Kinlochard: Permanent Under Secretary of State Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Ambassador to the USA (1995-7); non-executive deputy chairman, Royal Dutch Shell (natural resources, £50,000). Other FTSE directorships: non-executive director, Rio Tinto (natural resources, £64,900); Scottish American Investment Company (banking and finance, £12,000).

Snowy Jon
Earlier posting: Let the National Gallery know how you feel about Shell

If you want to contact the National Gallery:
Charles Saumarez Smith (Director), Trafalgar Square, London WC2N 5DN
Tel: 020 7747 2885;

Or maybe get in touch with these pillars. (Keep it polite if not necessarily respectful, I reckon.)

Board of Trustees, as at Nov 05, with National Shellery's original descriptions, (note the absence of the word 'Shell'):

Lord Kerr of Kinlochard: Permanent Under Secretary of State Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Ambassador to the USA (1995-7);

Mr Jon Snow: Television journalist, presenter of Channel Four News; ex-Trustee of the BP-sponsored Tate; 'supporter' of Remember Saro-Wiwa.

Mr Peter Scott (Chairman): QC, Chairman of the Takeover Panel and former Chairman of the General Council of the Bar.

Victoria Barnsley: CEO of HarperCollins UK and founder of the Fourth Estate publishing company.

Mr Simon Burke: Chartered accountant and Executive Chairman of Superquinn, the leading Irish supermarket chain.

Professor David Ekserdijan: Professor of Art History at the University of Leicester, former Editor of Apollo Magazine (1997-2004), writer and journalist.

Mr James Fenton: Poet, critic and journalist who has written extensively on art. He was Professor of Poetry at Oxford 1994-1999.

Mr Mark Getty: Co-founder and Chairman of Getty Communications plc.

Professor Julia Higgins: Professor of Polymer Science at Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine. The National Gallery's Scientist Trustee.

Mr John Lessore: Artist Trustee. His work is represented in the collections of the National Portrait Gallery, the RA and the Tate.

Mr Donald A. Moore: Chairman of Morgan Stanley Group (Europe).

Lady Normanby: Author and literary critic.

Mr Ranjit Sondhi: BBC Governor, formerly on the Commission for Racial Equality and the DfEE's Task Force on Disability Rights.

Professor Mervyn King: Governor of the Bank of England and Chairman of the Monetary Policy Committee. Was Professor of Economics at the LSE from 1984, and has been Visiting Professor at both Harvard and MIT.

Snowy Jon


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