June 19, 2020
A new coalition of Pacific Peace groups says the “RIMPAC’ military exercises event exploits Pacific peoples and causes environmental damage and should be cancelled.
The ‘war games’, which will be attended by up to 26 countries in Hawaiian waters this August have already been scaled down from three months down to two weeks’ duration because of COVID-19, but the Pacific Pacific Network (PPN) says it should be cancelled altogether.
Two countries, Israel and Chile have already pulled out, and several others, including Australia, are undecided. Currently New Zealand plans to send one ship, the HMS Manawanui with 66 military personnel.
“Indigenous people in Hawai’i are struggling for some degree of self-determination in the face of nuclearisation, militarisation and economic exploitation of the Pacific. We believe our military participation in Rimpac is an ugly expression of this multi-level colonisation – physical, cultural, spiritual, economic, nuclear, military – past and present”, says PPN convenor Liz Remmerswaal from World Beyond War Aotearoa New Zealand.
This Saturday at 1:00pm NZ time, the Pacific Peace Network is hosting a webinar featuring six representatives from Pacific and Asian countries about their concerns, particularly in relation to the environment and the Black Lives Matter movement.
Speakers from across the Pacific include: Kawena Kapahua, Cancel Rimpac Coalition (Hawaii), Dr Margie Beavis, Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia), Maria Hernandez, Prutehi Litekyan: Save Ritidian (Guam/Guahan), Virginia Lacsa Suarez, Co-Convenor of SCRAP VFA! – a broad campaign network of coalitions, organizations and individuals united in the pursuit of genuine sovereignty, (Philippines), and Valerie Morse, Peace Action Wellington (Aotearoa New Zealand).
It will be recorded and is available to watch live on: https://actionnetwork.org/
There is also a petition, as below: https://diy.rootsaction.org/
For more information, please contact:
Liz Remmerswaal, World Beyond War Aotearoa NZ/Pacific Peace Network
Ph 027 333 1055