Press Release – Peace Action Wellington
News that 26 US Navy ships and 3,500 soldiers have confirmed Covid-19 cases is an urgent and compelling reason for the New Zealand government to withdraw from participation in this years RIMPAC military exercise due to begin in June, said Valerie Morse, …
“News that 26 US Navy ships and 3,500 soldiers have confirmed Covid-19 cases is an urgent and compelling reason for the New Zealand government to withdraw from participation in this year’s RIMPAC military exercise due to begin in June,” said Valerie Morse, member of Peace Action Wellington.
“RIMPAC is the world’s largest navy war preparation exercise. It happens in Hawai’i and includes militaries from two dozen countries. This is a toxic mix that will descend upon the people in Hawai’i spreading more disease, and exponentially expanding infections across the globe.”
“War and preparations for war are not an essential service. Rather they are a threat to human life and ecological health. Peace Action Wellington has joined dozens of academics and human rights organisations calling on the government to cancel New Zealand’s participation in RIMPAC in a letter to the Prime Minister.”
One of the signatories of the New Zealand letter is Hawai’i State Senator Amy Perruso who said:
“COVID-19 is demonstrating that the safety of our society depends not on military might, but mutual aid. Gathering more than 25,000 international military personnel together to practice waging war will worsen the global spread of the coronavirus and put Hawai’i’s people at risk. This pandemic cannot be defeated by guns and warships. It requires that we stop funding imperialism and, instead, invest in public health and the
“Hawaiians have long called for an end to the bi-annual RIMPAC exercises because of the devastating social and ecological effects of these military exercises including increased child sex trafficking and severe degradation of vulnerable marine ecosystems. With Covid-19, the risk has dramatically increased.”
“These RIMPAC war exercises are a horrific replaying of imperial invasions of indigenous communities complete with deadly viral infections that happened throughout the Pacific in the 18th and 19th century.”
“The New Zealand government wisely acted early to ensure that Covid-19 was not spread to our Pacific neighbours. It is imperative that New Zealand continues to act responsibly in limiting the spread of the virus to vulnerable communities.”
26 US Navy ships have COVID-19 cases. Read here.
Sex trafficking of children resulting from RIMPAC. Read here.
Open Letter to Jacinda Arden to Cancel RIMPAC 2020. Read here.
Content Sourced from scoop.co.nz