Welcome to Bennett's World: a collection of articles and references covering a wide variety of topics in which I am involved. I am a very political person but I have no allegiance to any political party. Follow me on twitter @colinhove

Sunday, May 03, 2020

Update from CAAT

I have been a bit remiss lately in updating my blog. Sorry about that! Here is an interesting item from CAAT (of which I am a keen supporter). It concerns several items and in particular, the recent Supreme Court ruling on the ability for pension schemes to divest from the 'defence industry' and firms operating in the Palestinian territories occupied by Israel.

Their email is below:

Dear friends,

We're pleased to have some encouraging news to share in these
difficult times, as well as a date for the diary with the UK's
largest arms company.

Ethical Investment win in the Supreme Court

Congratulations to our friends at Palestine Solidarity Campaign
for their Supreme Court victory 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4003&qid=2182776 )
 this week! The successful action means council pension funds
can continue to divest from firms operating in Palestinian
territories occupied by Israel, and also from the arms trade.

CAAT made submissions in support of this important case and we
are thrilled about its success, which protects fundamental rights
and freedoms.

Your voice was heard on arms trade corruption

Allegations about corruption in a £2 billion deal to supply
equipment to the Saudi Arabian National Guard first surfaced in
2011, and in 2018 we heard that the Serious Fraud Office had
finally requested permission to prosecute. But the Attorney
General’s office, whose permission is needed, has been sitting on
it ever since.

In February, when a new Attorney General was appointed, we asked
for your help to put the pressure on 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4004&qid=2182776 ) – and
thousands of you responded.

This week, a Parliamentary Question was asked about the progress
of the case, and the Attorney General told Parliament: "that case
was one of the first matters, if not the first, to cross my desk,
so it is a priority for me and I will not rest until we find an
appropriate resolution."

In fact, we know that, thanks to you, this case has now ‘crossed
her desk’ more than 3,500 times!

We’ll need to keep pushing 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4004&qid=2182776 ) for
there to be more progress but for now it’s important that the
government knows the issue won’t go away quietly. Thank you!

Protest against BAE online 11am Thursday

Every year, CAAT supporters attend the Annual General Meeting of
BAE Systems, the UK’s biggest arms company, to hold the company’s
leadership to account. This year, the meeting (understandably)
cannot take place as normal but, unlike many other AGMs in the
same situation, BAE is hiding from any scrutiny and
won’t hold proceedings online either.

The company will be glad to avoid awkward questions about its £15
billion in revenue 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4005&qid=2182776 )
 from Saudi Arabia since 2015. Yet, as Yemen faces its first
coronavirus deaths, with a health system already devastated by
five years of war, these questions are as urgent as ever.

So we’ll be holding our own 'meeting' online to expose its dodgy
deals. Follow from 11am on Thursday 7 May, on CAAT’s blog 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4006&qid=2182776 ), Facebook 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4007&qid=2182776 ), and Twitter
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4008&qid=2182776 ).

In other news

We’ve been speaking out against ‘Sportwashing’ 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4009&qid=2182776 )
 as the Saudi ruling family leads a deal to try to buy Newcastle
football club.

And, as global military expenditure reaches highs not seen since
the Second World War, we’re calling for a shift in priorities 
( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4010&qid=2182776 )
. Just one of the 138 F-35 warplanes the UK government is buying
could pay for 3,000 ventilators.

Thanks as always, for your continued support for CAAT,

Campaign Against Arms Trade ( https://crm.caat.org.uk/sites/all/modules/civicrm/extern/url.php?u=4011&qid=2182776 )


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