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Cindy Sheehan Joins Peace Activists in Britain

Dec 10, 2005, 9:42 AM EST

LONDON (AP) -- Hundreds of anti-war protesters, including American Cindy Sheehan, attended an international peace conference in London on Saturday to condemn the Iraq conflict.

Tony Benn, a veteran leftist politician in the governing Labour Party, opened the one-day meeting by calling the war "illegal, immoral and unwinnable."

He said the peace movement wants to see coalition troops withdrawn from Iraq, justice for Palestinians and a ban on any Western military attacks on Iran or Syria.

Benn said anti-war sentiment was growing in the United States and Britain, whose armed forces dominate the coalition's military presence in Iraq.

Up to 1,500 anti-war protesters and activists gathered for the 10-hour conference, which was organized by the Stop the War Coalition.

The scheduled speakers included Sheehan, who has become a focus of anti-war sentiment in the United States by camping outside the Texas ranch of President George W. Bush; Hasan Zergani Hashim, a spokesperson for Iraq's radical Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr; and leftist British legislator George Galloway.

In an interview with Sky TV, Galloway urged British forces to leave Iraq.

"The only thing the Iraqis want from the British government is to see the backs of their heads as they leave the country," he said.

"If occupation is ugly, then resistance will hardly be pretty," he said, in an apparent reference to the deadly attacks that are being conducted by insurgent groups in Iraq.


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Birds of a feather.........doesn't matter where you're turd is just like another turd.

I was at the peace conference and it was wonderful to hear speakers from America.

One thing kind of bugs me though - the American peace activists have done such a wonderful job of getting the Downing St memo into the media and I have heard many saying that they have 'a lot of catching up to do' with regards the UK anti-war movement's use of this memo. The UK movement has NOT actually done a whole lot with it, unless I blinked and missed that - it was originally published in the Times newspaper (surprisingly so, as that is one of Murdoch's) during the election earlier this year and then more or less left to rot by people in the UK who should have not rested until an enquiry into this was initiated or at the very least a fuss of some kind was made.

So well done to all the Americans who used their outrage over this so well and didn't stop working until your media recognised that this memo could no longer be ignored. And stop being so self-deprecating - you are a large, vibrant and dedicated movement and we in the UK have a lot of learn from you - not the other way round!

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7:30 to 9 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists, sponsored by the Social Justice Committee and Cynthia Papermaster, 1606 Bonita Ave. (at Cedar), Berkeley, CA
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May 30, Fresno, CA
2 to 4 p.m., David Swanson and Cindy Sheehan at a Peace Fresno event
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