International Citizens Inspection to Prevent Warcrimes announced at NATO headquarters
PRESS CONTACT 0495-28 02 59 (Pol D'Huyvetter & Krista van Velzen)-> 10:00 Start walk Atomium -> 12:00 Arrival International Inspection team at NATO Negotiations with Nick Fiorenza (NATO press Office) -> 13:00 Lunch, speeches and music at NATO -> ?? Report Inspection -> 16:00 - 18:00 Reception at the European Parliament for the peacemarchersBrussels, May 27th 1999 - This morning 10 a.m. at the Atomium in Brussels aprox. 500 peace marchers from over 30 countries will set their final steps to NATO headquarters in the For Mother Earth 220km peace walk. The peace marchers started their walk at the International Court of Justice in the Hague on May 16. They want NATO to take immediate action towards nuclear disarmament, while also asking an end to the NATO bombings in the Balkan. Although forbidden, today it seems that the Mr. De Donnea, Mayor of Brussels, might tolerate the non-violent marchers to reach the gates of NATO headquarters where a meeting is being set up for the inspectors. The marchers announce themselves as 'an international citizens inspection team to prevent warcrimes'. In a registered letter to Solana they ask for detailed information about NATO's nuclear stockpile, referring to numbers, locations, yield and targets (cfr. http://www.motherearth.org/walk99/tonato.htm).
The final march to NATO headquarters was declared illegal by the Mayor of Brussels. The walkers remain however determined to march to NATO, as they uphold international law, referring to the Nurmberg Principles and right to freedom of speech and assembly. According to For Mother Earth spokesperson Pol D'Huyvetter "Non-violent demonstrations against the war are being forbidden systematically in Belgrade and Brussels since the outbreak of the war. Todays inspection on NATO's illegal weapons of mass destruction might be the first demonstration being allowed at NATO since the war in Kosovo. This is a first step. We however demand to receive the controversial information from NATO which proves the Nuclear Planning Group is preparing crimes against humanity. NATO has to stop acting as the world's policemen, and respect the UN".
Marchers Azerbeidjan, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Cameroon, Colombia, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Israel, Iran, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Nepal, New-Zealand, Netherlands, Norway, Pakistan, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Scotland, Sweden, Ukraine, USA and Wales.
The walk has received the support of Abolition 2000, an international network of over 1300 NGO's working to eliminate all nuclear weapons.
The organisation of the international peace march is being co-ordinated from the international office of For Mother Earth in Gent, Belgium. Since 1991 For Mother Earth organized more than 12000km of peace marches across the US and Europe
Letter to Solana http://www.motherearth.org/walk99/tonato.htm
Audiovisual footage available from the walk
During the walk, the mobile media unit will be providing continuous coverage via video clips, stills and digital images. These are available upon request. The audio-visual website will carry highlights of the footage, which is located at: http://www.motherearth.org/walk99/pics
For updates and more information contact:
For Mother Earth http://www.motherearth.org
Press Briefings on Internet & on location:
Regular press briefings and photo images can be located at http://www.motherearth.org/walk99/press.htm
Pol D´Huyvetter and Krista Van Velzen Audio-visual media contact: Ville Aho
GSM 0495-28 02 59 (in Belgium)
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