UK: Pax Christi UK protests over city investments in arms trade


from Independent Catholic News

24/5/19 - On 16th May, for the seventh year running, members of Coventry Justice and Peace Group, Pax Christi, Passionists and Coventry Quakers stood outside Coventry Cathedral before the Annual Council Meeting and Mayor Making.

They were asking the Council, as part of the West Midlands Consortium, to stop investing their money in the Arms Trade and contributing to war, death and destruction.

A spokesman told ICN: "All council tax payers in the West Midlands contribute to the arms trade and the consequent death and destruction it brings.

"The West Midlands Pension Fund invests in leading arms manufacturers: Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, Raytheon, Boeing and many more. Yet, less than 1% of this money is with arms dealers. We are asking the question, 'Why not get rid of it once and for all?'"

He said: "Coventry is the 'City of Peace and Reconciliation'. It cannot be right to maintain arms investments while priding ourselves on this title. As a 'City of Sanctuary' we give refuge to victims of war while accommodating those firms which contribute to the causes of war. In 2021, Coventry will be the 'City of Culture'. Clearly, war destroys culture."

Ann Farr said: "For seven years we have been raising awareness about the City Council's investments. Every year we have given out leaflets to all the guests going into the gathering and then stood, with our banners, facing the procession of Councillors and the outgoing and incoming Lord Mayors of Coventry as they entered the Cathedral.The initial response to our demands was not encouraging!

"It took five years of leafleting, banner holding, meetings, letters and petitions to get them to divest from cluster bombs, which are internationally illegal!..."

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Pax Christi UK, Ann Farr, UK