Amy Clark-Bryan of No Pride In War was one of many activists that took part in actions urging the organisers of Pride in London to end its associations with the arms trade.
Tuesday 24th May was a day packed full of action, as LGBTQI campaigners united to say loud and clear “No Pride in War!”
The day began with a visit to BAE Systems offices in central London, to protest against BAE Systems’ invitation to Pride this year. Queer grim reapers dumped a body at BAE’s doorstep and encouraged their workers to go elsewhere. Despite its attempts to associate itself with LGBTQI rights, BAE has consistently armed some of the most abusive and anti-LGBTQI regimes in the world.
This set the scene for an evening vigil outside City Hall, where the Pride Committee was holding a public meeting. The vigil sought to raise awareness of the proposed Red Arrows fly-over and to put pressure on the Pride Committee to reconsider who they invite to Pride and what Pride should represent.
Banners, placards, flowers, flags, a coffin marked with a bulls-eye and wreaths adorned the space outside City Hall with activists dressed all in black to mark the mourning of LGBTQI who have lost lives at the hands of the arms industry.
As the protests got into full swing, the ‘No Pride in War’ floral funeral tribute arrived, leading the funeral-like procession around City Hall with the coffin and a crowd of activists following close behind. We made our voices well and truly heard. Pride is ours and is not a platform for PR by RAF and BAE Systems.
Find out more about the promotion of the military and arms exports by the RAF’s Red Arrows and the devastating ties BAE Systems has with repressive countries such as Saudi Arabia, whose aircraft are supplied by BAE and are being used to bomb Yemen.
The demand for the cancellation of the Red Arrows fly past is intensifying as plans are under way to make sure this demand is met.