Disarmament Millennium night
Time to Abolish War and to promote a Culture of Peace
For Mother Earth collects weapons in order to forge them into sculptures of peace
Gent (Belgium), 27th of December 1999- Next New Year's eve For Mother Earth will organise a 'disarmament ploughshares millennium night' in co-operation with the "Sculpture-Collective Loods 13", which was founded by Walter De Buck, a well-known and popular Belgian artist. This special events will mark the start of a ploughshares project that calls for the abolition of war and the promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence. The aim is to collect (unloaded) fire arms, such as revolvers, guns, machine guns and swords, starting on New Year's Eve. Next spring the collected weapons will be forged into sculptures of peace. These peace symbols will get a permanent place in front of the new For Mother Earth offices and Ecological Centre in Gent, which are located on the square of the town's main railway, bus and tram station.
Last century was marked as never before by bloody, murderous and inhuman wars. The military budgets skyrocketed, while a big part of the worlds inhabitants are still not met in their needs for food, clean water, public health, education and other basic needs. With this project, For Mother Earth wants to address the politicians, which continue to succumb to the pressure of the weapons industry and warlords' logic. Also the purple green Belgian government (social, liberal & green parties) is aiming to increase the defence budget, as demanded by NATO.
"Today we are living in a culture of war", stated For Mother Earth spokesperson Pol D'Huyvetter. "War is not fundamentally questioned, not by the media, not at home or school. We need to challenge people's imagination, and outlaw war in the next century." Therefore For Mother Earth will also accept children's war-toys as these toys legitimize war for the children and the next generations to come.
On the press conference of next Thursday, For Mother Earth will reveal a manifest asking the abolition of war, while promoting a non-violent culture of peace. This petition will be offered both the known and lesser known people in Belgium. A first list of names will be made public at the news conference.
The project already receives support from other NGO's, i.e. the WRI, Pax Christi Flanders and Oxfam Worldshop. Walter de Buck and his collective plan to make their sculpture from the recycled metal. It will express the wounds and the tragedy of war.
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