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Faslane security breached again as protesters paint on Trident

TRIDENT PLOUGHSHARES | 09.08.2002 01:37 | Peace not War

Press Release: 8th August 2002 : At 3am this morning, two Trident Ploughshares activists breached the security at Faslane naval base on the Clyde. Veteran Peace Campaigner, Dave Rolstone (55) and Gillian Sloan (40) were arrested when they swam into the nuclear base and painted on the side of a Trident submarine.

The fact that they have been charged with Malicious Mischief and from information received directly from within the base means that Trident Ploughshares can confirm that the pair did paint on the side of the berthed submarine.

Dave Rolstone, a boat builder from West Wales, has recently returned from carrying out peace work in Palestine as well as having visited Iraq three times. Gillian Sloan is a Social Worker from Edinburgh.

In a statement from the activists, they explained, "We have chosen to paint the word 'vile' because it is an anagram of 'evil' as well as being in line with naval policy to give the submarines names beginning with the letter 'v'."

Joss Garman of Trident Ploughshares said, "The security at Faslane has been breached several times by our activists now. Today's action proves that the security measures at the base are still inadequate despite the increased threat from terrorists since September 11th."

This action has been the most successful attempt at disarming Trident so far during the International Trident Ploughshares Disarmament Camp. Of the 32 previously arrested, all have now been released from police custody.

Contacts: Trident Ploughshares Camp 0845 4588366 Newsline (recorded) 08454588365

Statement from Dave Rolstone and Gillian Sloan


This is the statement of Dave Rolstone and Gillian Sloan made on 7th August 2002 immediately prior to an attempt to enter the high security zone of Faslane Naval Base in order to spray paint on the Trident submarine berthed therein. We have chosen to paint the word 'vile' because it is an anagram of 'evil' as well as being in line with naval policy to give the submarines names beginning with the letter 'v'.

The reason we are doing this action is to highlight the deteriorating world situation in what seems to be the run up to a major war with Iraq and the high probability of a nuclear exchange. British Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon has issued nuclear threats against Iraq three times in recent months.

On 20 March 2002, Geoff Hoon told the House of Commons Select Committee on Defence that states like Iraq "can be absolutely confident that in the right conditions we would be willing to use our nuclear weapons".

Then, on 24 March, Geoff Hoon appeared on ITV's Jonathan Dimbleby show and insisted that the government "reserved the right" to use nuclear weapons if Britain or British troops were threatened by chemical or biological weapons.

Then, Hoon was asked about his threats in the House of Commons in a debate on 29 April. Hoon said, "ultimately and in conditions of extreme self-defence, nuclear weapons would have to be used".

In the House of Commons debate, Diane Abbott MP pressed the Defence Secretary for an explanation of what these 'conditions of extreme self-defence' might be. Hoon refused to be specific. The Defence Secretary confined himself to saying that it was "important to point out that the Government has nuclear weapons available to them and that in certain specified conditions to which I have referred we would be prepared to use them".

These quotes, together with the implicit threat to use nuclear weapons in the latest MOD defence policy (SDR A New Chapter) leave no doubt that they will be used.

Having recently returned from Palestine, Dave has seen first hand the destructive nature of the British arms trade. This, together with his three visits to Iraq, has convinced him that the British government has no hesitation in recklessly breaking international and humanitarian law and is not concerned by civilian casualties.

Dave Rolstone and Gillian Sloan

"Non-co-operation with evil is as much a duty as co-operation with good" - Gandhi



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  1. Nice One — frill