CODEPINK in Berlin – Stop Drone Killing – Medea Benjamin 13.12.13

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CODEPINK in Berlin – Stop Drone Killing – Medea Benjamin 13.12.13

Medea Benjamin delivers a letter to Angela Merkel
Schluss mit dem Drohnenkrieg – Medea Benjamin delivers a letter
to german chancellor Angela Merkel and to the US-embassy in Berlin
Bilder bei der Übergabe einer Erklärung von Medea Benjamin an Kanzlerin Merkel am 13. Dez. 2013 in Berlin


Calls on President Obama to apologize and pledge to end strikes

Washington, DC—- The peace group CODEPINK unequivocally condemns the killing of 15 innocent civilians —- all part of a wedding convoy—- by a US drone in Yemen today. The group calls on President Obama to apologize to the families and pledge to immediately put an end to these strikes that have led to the death of so many noncombatants. CODEPINK has long criticized the Obama administration’s drone policy as being contrary to international law, immoral, and ineffective in combating terrorism.

The tragedy today is not an isolated incident; US drone strikes have been killing innocent civilians in Yemen for years. According to US officials, the targeted wedding was a “mistake,” but it’s just one example of countless “signatures strikes” that profiles people based on what is considered suspicious behavior. In this case, it seems that a group of vehicles driving together was deemed suspicious enough to launch Hellfire missiles.

“If this had happened in the United States, it would be called mass murder and we would be absolutely outraged,” said CODEPINK co-founder Jodie Evans. “Since when are our lives more important than theirs? How will anyone in Yemen feel safe enough to do something as simple and joyful as having a wedding celebration when they are being terrorized by American drones? President Obama needs to be held responsible. He needs to apologize, and immediately put an end to the horrific killing.”

Today’s strike proved again that these attacks are not as precise as they are purported to be, and in fact kill non-combatants with total impunity. “This is an abhorrent example of the United States’ unchecked power to bomb indiscriminately with no accountability,” said CODEPINK’s anti-drone campaign coordinator, Noor Mir. “With the deaths of all these innocent people, this is the time for the American people and the world community to insist that the strikes end and that those responsible be held accountable.”

CODEPINK just held a Drone Summit in Washington DC November 16 with over 400 participants and just today, in Berlin, cohosted a gathering with representatives from 10 countries. “This latest attack shows the importance of the global anti-drone network we’re creating,” said Medea Benjamin, author of Drone Warfare. “Obama needs to listen to the rising voice of global dissent,” she added.

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