Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Meeting Radiation Risks At Low Doses and update on Dan Viesnik

New studies on the impacts of low-level radiation

Dr Ian Fairlie
(Independent consultant on radiation and health)
All welcome - Admission free
Organised by Nuclear Awareness Group (NAG)
Information: 0118 327 7489 / www.nuclearawarenessgroup.org.uk

7.00 pm Thursday 11 February
RISC Centre
35-39 London Street, Reading

Yesterday AWE protestor Dan Viesnik got 14 days imprisonment.
'I was in the public gallery of Court 4 at Highbury Corner magistrates courts this afternoon (1/2/2010) with about twenty other supporters of Dan Viesnik. Dan is a peace activist and active supporter of Brent Green Party.'
I was with Dan as we walked from AWE to London with footprints for peace in Aug 2007.

The facts of the case are much as reported already on http://greenleftblog.blogspot.com/ and http://wembleymatters.blogspot.com/. Dan had refused to pay a total of £515 in fines and costs imposed after his arrest for a sit down protest in the entrance to Aldermaston Atomic Weapons Establishment.

As his letter to the court (quoted on http://greenleftblog.blogspot.com/), shows Dan has decided to continue his protest against the grotesque distortions of justice caused by the British Government’s committment to Weapons of Mass Destruction. Dan continued his argument in the statement that he read out to the court which protested against the resources spent on nukes in a world where chronic poverty continued. Dan ended his statement with a quote from Thoreau affirming that an individual acting according to his/her own conscience should be a better guide to conduct than the letter of law. In this instance I agree with Dan and Thoreau.

Advised by the Clerk of the Court, the Bench decided that Dan’s explicit refusal to pay his fine or even acknowledge that he had committed a crime by giving details of his means, meant that they had no option but to imprison Dan. The fact that they gave him 14 days rather than 28 which they could have done, may indicate sympathy or may indicate a wish to minimize the prison population, but in any event, I am sure that Dan has the best wishes and support of many Green Party members and others. I hope that we will be able to find a way to let him know this.

I echo the words of http://wembleymatters.blogspot.com/2010/02/wembley-peace-activist-sentenced-to-14.html 'I express my admiration for Dan's principled action and his courage at a time when there is so little of either in evidence from our politicians. It is incredible that on Friday the Chilcott Inquiry failed to make Tony Blair answer for waging an illegal war, which killed thousands of innocent civilians, on a pretext of non-existent Weapons of Mass Destruction; and on Monday a peace activist was jailed for not paying a fine incurred when he demonstrated against our own Weapons of Mass Destruction.'

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