Several hundred protesters rallied outside the US embassy in London today, Saturday, as Nato leaders met in Chicago to discuss the ongoing “war on terror”.
The protest was called by the Stop the War Coalition and the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, and took place alongside anti-war protests across the world.
The protesters came from a variety of campaigns and groups, and had a wide range of concerns.
Speakers demanded an immediate withdrawal from Afghanistan, and spoke against the threat of war with Iran and Syria.
Others raised the continued threat from Israel to Palestinians and Iran, and demanded the closure of the Guantanamo Bay US prison camp. Several protesters wore orange jumpsuits to remember the prisoners still held in Guantanamo.
Arabella Lawson, an actor, came to the rally after hearing about it on a Palestine protest.
“I can’t see why after seeing everything that happened in Iraq and Afghanistan they’re even contemplating going into Iran,” she told Socialist Worker.
Sharon Askew from Guildford said she joined the protest because she was concerned at Nato’s attempts to increase its influence in the world. “What they’re doing is more about protecting oil supplies than it is about protecting people,” she said.
“Nato is expanding, and that’s frightening if you want peace.”
Andrew Murray of the Unite union told the crowd that the Nato event in Chicago would see “the most dangerous gang assemble there since Al Capone’s”.
He added, “We’re also here to say ‘hands off Syria’. There can be no repeat of what happened in Libya.”
Solidarity statements were read out from the platform from Respect MP George Galloway and the US United National Anti-war Coalition (UNAC).
UNAC has planned a protest in Chicago tomorrow outside the Nato conference.