Stop the War Coalition AGM 2015: Resolutions

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The Stop the War Coalition annual general meeting on 19 September 2015 passed the following motions.

Motion from: Stop the War Coalition officers’ group
Nato intervention in Ukraine-Russia conflict
Conference notes that the civil war in Ukraine:

  • has claimed the lives of tens of thousands of civilians,
  • has ratcheted up tension between Russia and the western powers, and
  • risks turning into a regional war involving the US, UK, and other major powers.

Conference is aware that Nato has played an important part in exacerbating tensions between Russia and Ukraine, In particular, Nato:

  • has sharply increased the number of its forces in the region since the conflict began, despite repeated warnings from the Russian government that Nato’s advance towards its borders would cause a security crisis;
  • has intensified its engagement with Ukraine, describing it as one of the Atlantic Alliance’s ‘most substantive partnerships’;
  • is planning a further series of interventions in the region involving the deployment of troops and heavy military equipment with a focus on Russia’s western border; and
  • is holding naval exercise in the Black Sea during September 2015, hosted by Ukraine and with British forces participation.

Conference therefore resolves to continue campaigning

  • against all foreign intervention in Ukraine,
  • for an immediate ceasefire in conformity with the Minsk 2 agreement, and
  • for British withdrawal from Nato and an end to British training of Ukraine's armed forces.

Conference further resolves to:

  • do all we can to counter government and media portrayal of Nato involvement in the Ukraine as a defensive response to Russian aggression; and
  • oppose further Nato military intervention in the region, including the involvement of UK forces, advisors, and equipment.

Campaigning against the imperialist intervention in the Middle East and Gulf

Since our last AGM the imperialist intervention has spread further chaos to the people of the region. Utilising the growth of IS/Daesh, the U.S. has returned to Iraq, accompanied by allies including the UK.  The same excuse has been used by the US to justify direct intervention inside Syria.

The imperialists’ want to ensure compliant governments are established in both these states.  Lacking reliable local support, the US and allies are disrupting sovereign states.

The AGM registers that Cameron’s government has defied the decision of Parliament in 2013 to oppose military action in Syria.  RAF personnel have been used under U.S. command for bombing missions in Syria.  Equally, SAS members have been used under U.S. command in ground missions inside Syria.  A key priority in the coming year is to ensure that Parliament does not authorise military action.

The US and UK governments have provided political and logistical support for the Saudi-led coalition’s war upon Yemen. The AGM opposes the war, and calls for an end to arm sales to the Gulf dictatorships.

The US and UK governments are providing political support for the Turkish government’s assault upon the Kurdish people in Syria and Iraq.  The AGM opposes this extension of war, and supports the resumption of the Peace Process between the Turkish government and Kurdish people.

The 2014 war upon Gaza was a disaster for Palestine.  The AGM will continue to join with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, and others, in pursuit of justice for the Palestinians.

The imperialist intervention has created millions of refugees.  The AGM condemns the UK government’s use of racism and Islamophobia to disown its responsibilities towards the refugees, and its role in their displacement.

Motion from: Oxford Brookes Stop the War

Assembly for young people against war resolution
Conference resolves that an assembly for young people against war should be established, incorporating young people into Stop the War's wider anti-war campaigning. Such an organisation would be an efficient way to build links between local groups and student bodies, allowing for an effective base with which to aid future campaigning. Furthermore, the Officers’ Group and Steering Committee are urged to pursue this and ensure the formation of a young people’s body within Stop the War’s wider organisation.

Motion from: South Tyneside Stop the War

  • Stand against the interference, aggression of the US and its allies on the Korean Peninsula

    It is a fact that the Stop the War Coalition has taken a stand against Britain's warmongering activities as part of NATO in the world. As an integral part of this stand, the anti-war movement opposes the hostile actions of the US and its allies on and around the Korean Peninsula. The criminal US embargo against the DPRK has been in place since 1951. The US has committed innumerable acts of espionage and aggression, including the stationing of nuclear weapons in south Korea. The military presence of the US in south Korea includes close to 30,000 troops. The United States' and south Korea's joint military exercises titled "Key Resolve" and "Foal Eagle" have been conducted against the Democratic People's Republic of Korea annually, most recently during August. These aggressive exercises have taken place under the fig-leaf of the UN, which has not endorsed them.
  • The conclusion must be drawn that the danger of war on the Korean Peninsula, as it is in other parts of the world, is the interference, intervention, aggression and the fostering of proxies by the US and its NATO allies, including Britain.
  • The Stop the War Coalition takes a decisive stand against this interference, aggression of the US and its allies on the Korean Peninsula. It demands that the US sign a peace treaty with the DPRK as mandated by the Armistice Agreement of 1953. It is a monstrous injustice that this has not already been done. Regardless of different political systems no country should be subject to the threat of war.

Motion from: Bristol Stop the War

This conference notes:

1. That the nuclear deal signed between Iran and P5+1 recognizes Iran’s NPT right to enrichment and the removal of all nuclear related sanctions in return for Iran accepting stringent inspections and reduction of scale and scope of its nuclear programme for a specified period of time.

2. That Israel and the US hawks are intent on derailing this deal.

3. That Israel, a country with a history of unilateral aggression and the only country in the Middle East refusing to join the NPT and in possession of nuclear weapons has, in clear violation of the UN charter, threatened and planned military strikes on Iran, including nuclear strikes. Israel states that it is not bound by this international agreement and has continued its military threats.

This conference believes:

1. The nuclear deal, in undermining the pretext for war on Iran and the removal of draconian sanctions on Iranian population, to be a welcome step towards peace.

2. That Iran’s nuclear crisis has been a manufactured crisis and that there has never been any real evidence of nuclear weaponisation or violation of its NPT obligations by Iran.

3. That the nuclear deal is not an affirmation of sanctions as a legitimate diplomatic tool. Sanctions on Iran have been illegitimate, illegal and an act of war on the most vulnerable sections of the Iranian population.

4. That the threat of future military action by Israel and the US hawks remains.

This conference resolves:

1. That the STWC will lobby the government, MPs and politicians demanding that in accordance with their support for a Nuclear Free Middle East, they must now put public and unequivocal pressure on Israel to join the NPT, undergo the same stringent inspections and restrictions as imposed on Iran, and abandon its arsenal of nuclear weapons.

2. That the STWC will demand the government, MPs and politicians now impose sanctions and support the BDS campaign against Israel to force its nuclear disarmament and to end the occupation of Palestine.

3. That the STWC will demand the British government, as a signatory to the nuclear deal, continue honouring this agreement, regardless of any decision from the US Congress and any future US administration to derail this agreement.

Motion from: Scotland Against Criminalising Communities (SACC)

Conference is concerned at the continuing threat to democracy, peace and community relations posed by the Prevent strategy and deplores its embodiment into UK law under the Counter Terrorism and Security Act 2015 (CTSA).

Conference believes that:

1. 'Prevent' is coercive propaganda that legitimises UK wars, institutionalises Islamophobia and intimidates Muslims who dissent from UK Government policy.

2. Intelligence and security agencies and police should have no role in shaping or monitoring political discourse in the UK.

3. The construction and coercive promotion of 'British values' is racist, islamophobic and reactionary.

4. The government's attempt to determine what Muslims may and may not believe damages civil society, amounts to social engineering, and is unacceptable.

5. 'Prevent' has no part to play in countering the UK's far-right organisations or the Islamic State.

Conference:

1. Calls for the repeal of the CTSA and the scrapping of  'Prevent'.

2. Supports the right of everyone to criticise and peacefully oppose UK and "Western" intervention overseas.

3. Calls for solidarity with workers who find themselves in difficulty because they have refused to cooperate with 'Prevent' in their workplace, and with people subjected to monitoring under 'Prevent'.

4. Supports the stand taken by the NUS and UCU against 'Prevent', especially the NUS decision not to engage with 'Prevent', and the UCU decision to boycott 'Prevent'.

5. Asks the STWC Steering Committee and STWC local groups to build solidarity in the trade union movement and elsewhere with the stand taken by the NUS and and the UCU

6. Urges STWC local groups to work with trade unions to counter the islamophobic and pro-war outlook promoted by 'Prevent'.

7. Urges STWC local groups to work with other groups, including CAGE, the Islamic Human Rights Commission, the Campaign Against Criminalising Communities and Scotland Against Criminalising Communities  to oppose 'Prevent'.

Motion from: Socialist Workers’ Party

Notes:
1. That there are credible reports that the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq war will not publish its report until next June at the earliest.
2. That there is renewed debate about British foreign policy and the function of Nato.

Believes
1. That Jeremy Corbyn is right to say that, “More than 60 years of Nato membership has brought us enormous levels of military expenditure and, by our close relationship with the US through Nato and the Mutual Defence Agreement, involved us in countless conflicts.”

2. That Jeremy Corbyn is right to call for Britain to leave Nato.

3. That the Chilcot report is being delayed in order to prevent a serious examination on the murderous role of the British and US states (and in particular Tony Blair).

4. That we can have no confidence in Chilcot to publish the truth about Iraq.

Resolves:
1. To continue campaigning for British withdrawal from Nato.

2. To maintain the pressure for the truth about Iraq to be acknowledged—and for the British government to make a full apology to the Iraqi people and to the families of the British soldiers killed and maimed in the war.

3. That Iraq and numerous other conflicts underline the importance of the Stop the War Coalition and the continuing fight against imperialist war

Motion from: Edinburgh Stop the War Coalition

Conference notes:

  • The Scrap Trident Coalition in Scotland involves all the main anti-war and peace organisations.
  • The success of the Scrap Trident Coalition’s campaign in ensuring that Trident and Trident replacement has had a high profile during the Scottish referendum and its aftermath.
  • That 2016 will see the main gate decision on trident replacement.
  • The specific political situation in Scotland and the profile of Scrap Trident as a major political issue.

Conference therefore resolves:

  • To support and publicise CND’s campaign against Trident replacement;
  • To support and publicise events, initiatives and activity organised by the Scottish Scrap Trident Coalition on a UK wide and international basis.

Motion from: Coventry Stop the War Coalition

  • We congratulate Jeremy Corbyn on his victory in the Labour leader election.
  • We recall that on October 30, 2010, the Stop the War Coalition adopted a resolution on War Powers, to end the rights of the Sovereign and the Prime Minister to declare war, to make Parliament the sole decision-maker, that all military action be fully costed and approved annually, and that the STW Coalition would seek to advance these ideas with the help of sympathetic legal and political organisations.
  • Jeremy Corbyn has raised these matters again in his leadership campaign. Therefore, this Coalition welcomes his suggestions, and will work to support his efforts to move their implementation forward.