WBW Protests Giant Weapons Show in Halifax

By World BEYOND War, October 6, 2023

As DEFSEC Atlantic kicks off in Halifax, activists with World BEYOND War, Nova Scotia Voice of Women for Peace, and allies have been making sure it’s clear to all that military arms fairs like this one are precisely where war crimes start.

DEFSEC is the second largest arms-dealing trade show in Canada. Activists are showing up each day to protest the presence and purpose of DEFSEC Atlantic at the Halifax Convention Centre. No more profiteering off of war and bloodshed! Arms dealers are not welcome here!

They are handing out Pink Slips that have the Nuremberg Principles on one side and educational material about the escalation of Canada’s military spending and arms dealing on the other side of the handbill. War Crimes begin here – with weapons gliding into the killing industry of warfare. “We call for an end to the war in the Ukraine and urge the Canadian government to show the leadership and courage to stand for negotiation and nonviolent solutions to the conflict between Russia and the Ukraine. Stand for Peace!” says Kathrin Winkler with the Nova Scotia Voice of Women for Peace.

Here’s what’s on the pink slips:



DEFSEC is Canada’s second largest annual Aerospace, Defence & Security industry event – an industry that promotes, produces and develops weapons. Canada promotes and industry profits off robbing taxpayers resources from human security and community needs.

Armed drones and F35 stealth fighter jets don’t stop flooding and fires.

We demand:

That the government redirect military spending to urgent domestic and international social and environmental programs for a just, green and peaceful post-pandemic recovery.

Global Peace Index

According to the 2022 Exports of Military Goods report, last year, Canada exported military goods valued at $2.122-billion to destinations other than the United States. (Project Ploughshares)

Canadian Arms Exports exceeding $1-million to conflict-involved states in 2021

Saudi Arabia $1,746,347,878
Ukraine $54,922,825
Algeria $34,778,746
Israel $26,092,288
Morocco $22,227,411
Tunisia $12,072,273
Indonesia $10,708,499
Thailand $8,521,765
India $6,248,229
United Arab Emirates $3,070,851
Nigeria $1,896,504

Canada Signed onto the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) in 2019 agreeing to assess the extent to which the export of conventional arms might contribute to serious violations of international human rights law and suffering.

“Both violence and peacefulness can be contagious.”



The Nuremberg principles are a set of guidelines for determining what constitutes a war crime.


Any person who commits an act which constitutes a crime under international law is responsible therefore and liable to punishment.


The fact that internal law does not impose a penalty for an act which constitutes a crime under international law does not relieve the person who committed the act from responsibility under international law.


The fact that a person who committed an act which constitutes a crime under international law, acted as Head of State or responsible government official does not relieve him from responsibility under international law.


The fact that a person acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior does not relieve him from responsibility under international law, provided a moral choice was in fact possible to him.


Any person charged with a crime under international law has the right to a fair trial on the facts and law.


The crimes are punishable as crimes under international law:

Crimes against peace

Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances.

Participation in a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned under war crimes, including crimes against humanity, including murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation and other inhumane acts done against any civilian population, or persecutions on political, racial, or religious grounds, when such acts are done or such persecutions are carried on in execution of or in connection with any crime against peace or any war crime.

Leaders, organizers, instigators and accomplices participating in the formulation or execution of a common plan or conspiracy to commit any of the foregoing crimes are responsible for all acts performed by any persons in execution of such plan.


Complicity in the commission of a crime against peace, a war crime, or a crime against humanity as set forth in Principle VI is a crime under international law.


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