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Trial Begins for Drone War Crimes Resisters Near Syracuse, NY

In Drones on January 2, 2014 at 10:55 am

Trial Dates: Fri.,1/3 5 pm & will most likely continue Sat., 1/4 10 am

Press Conferences: Fri., 1/3 4pm and Sat., 1/4 9am with Former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark

DEWITT, N.Y. December 30, 2013.  On Friday, January 3rd at 5pm, sixteen people will begin trial in the DeWitt Town Court for protesting the piloting of MQ9 Reaper Drones at Hancock Air Base. They will defend themselves against charges of trespass and disorderly conduct. The defendants will hold a press conference January 3rd at 4pm, and Former US Attorney General Ramsey Clark will join them for the second press conference on January 4th at 9am at the DeWitt Town Court, at 5400 Butternut Drive, East Syracuse, NY. The trial will most likely continue at 10am.

On October 25, 2012, the sixteen served a War Crimes Indictment to Hancock Air Base, home of the 174th Attack Wing of the NY Air National Guard, and were arrested. The base is located on the backside of Syracuse Airport. Base personnel fly drones in Afghanistan, train operators and maintain MQ9 Reaper drones. In violation of international law, these drones kill and terrorize Afghan civilians.

The defendants are a part of Upstate NY Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars. Their intention was to uphold the US Constitution and international law, including the UN Charter, ratified by the United States.

Defendant Andrea Levine says, “My grandparents and great aunt survived the Holocaust and lost the rest of their family. My grandfather later testified against a Nazi in a war crimes trial that followed the Nuremberg Trials. Because of my family history, I am moved to ask how we can all challenge militarism and systemic racism. We’ve got a lot of work to do both at home and abroad.”

After hearing first-hand accounts from people living under drone attacks, three defendants, James Ricks, Judy Bello, and Patricia Weiland, protested on behalf of the drone victims they met in Pakistan.

“There is hope for a better world when we resist killing done in our name. We invite the community to bear witness at Hancock to say no to the killer drones” said defendant Mike Perry. www.upstatedroneaction.org

About Upstate NY Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars:

Founded in 2010, the Upstate NY Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars is a decentralized, grassroots organization that represents diverse peace and justice organizations from different cities. We seek to educate the public and Hancock Air Base personnel about the war crimes perpetrated in Afghanistan with the MQ9 Reaper Drone piloted from Hancock Air National Guard Base on the outskirts of Syracuse.

Trial dates- Friday, January 3rd 5 pm and Saturday, January 4th 10 amDefendants:

Elliott Adams Sharon Springs, NY (518) 441-2697

Judy Bello Rochester, NY (585) 733-4058

Daniel Burgevin Trumansburg, NY (607) 387-7532

Mark Colville New Haven, CT (203) 415- 5896

Paul Frazier Syracuse & Rochester, NY (585) 775-9135

Clare Grady Ithaca, NY (607) 273-6257

Mary Anne Grady Flores Ithaca, NY (607) 280-8797

Martha Hennessy New York, NY (212) 777-9617

Brian Hynes Bronx, NY (718) 838-2636

Ed Kinane Syracuse, NY (315) 478-4571

Rae Kramer Syracuse, NY (315) 445-2840

Andrea Levine Trumansburg, NY (908) 461-8491

Michael Perry Trumansburg, NY (585) 402-0658

James Rick Enfield, NY (607) 280-7794

Mark Scibilia-Carver Trumansburg, NY (607) 387-3916

Patricia Weiland Northampton, MA (413) 695-1877

For more information, Official contacts are: Mary Anne Grady Flores, Catholic Worker, Ithaca, NY, (607) 280-8797

Ed Kinane, Upstate Drone Action, Syracuse, NY, (315) 478-4571

Elliott Adams, Past Pres. Veterans for Peace, Sharon Springs, NY, (518) 441-2697

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