Peace conference calls for Pacific solidarity as Talisman Sabre war games begin

July 14, 2023
Peace conference highlights opposition to war
Peace conference highlights opposition to war. Photo: supplied

Anti-war and peace activists will shine a spotlight on the Talisman Sabre war games on July 29 at a “Calling for a Peaceful Pacific” conference

The Independent and Peaceful Australia Network (IPAN) and the Pacific Peace Network will host speakers including Monaeka Flores from Guahan (Guam) and Shinako Oyakawa from Ryukyu (Okinawa). Both come from islands occupied by United States military bases.

Flores is part of an organisation that fights for the rights of Indigenous Chamorro people in Guam where a US military base occupies one third of the island.

Okinawa has also been occupied by the US military since World War II. Oyakawa represents the Indigenous movement which, for decades, has fought for independence from the US and Japan.

“We can only admire them for their determination,” IPAN spokesperson Annette Brownlie told Green Left.

“The main aim of the conference in Brisbane is to shine a light on the militarisation happening in the Pacific as this confrontation between China and the United States builds up,” she said.

“Hosting Pacific guests who live the real experience of heavily militarised homes in the Pacific will allow for stronger links between Australian peace activists and Pacific peace activists.”

She said the conference also aims to promote anti-militarism amid the Talisman Sabre war games.

Other speakers will include Arama Rata from Aotearoa/New Zealand where a campaign is underway to prevent New Zealand from joining the imperialist AUKUS alliance. Anne Pakoa from Vanuatu will also speak.

The conference will include discussions about building stronger activism for a peaceful Pacific.

Participants will be urged to join a protest against Talisman Sabre at 10am the following day at the Enoggera Army Barracks. Following that there will be a week-long speaking tour, involving actions and public meetings, in Gadi/Sydney, Ngunnawal/Canberra and Garramilla/Darwin.

[Register here for the conference. For more information, visit the Facebook event.]


Meanjin Peace events July 28-30
Meanjin Peace events July 28-30

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