Protest camp set up at RAF base

Veteran peace campaigner Helen John has set up camp outside RAF Waddington in Lincolnshire. The 74 year old is demonstrating against the use of unmanned military aircraft.

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Campaigner's tent brands RAF base 'assassins'

A banner on the tent being used by a veteran peace campaigner who has moved onto land opposite RAF Waddington in Lincolnshire brands the air base 'assassins' for its involvement in the use of unmanned 'Reaper' drones. Helen John is living at the site with her dog.

Helen John's tent and banner Credit: ITV Calendar

The banner on the outside of her tent reads:

RAF Waddington (Murder Inc) Peace Camp. Grim reaper drones smash flesh and bones in oil rich lands far away guided by geeks, computer freaks, assassins.

Killing by remote control is a Nazi trait simply brought up to date breaking international humanitarian law. Fact. Murder is always unlawful.

The banner on Helen John's tent Credit: ITV Calendar

RAF base responds to peace campaigner's protest

The RAF has responded to a demonstration by veteran peace campaigner Helen John outside its base at Waddington in Lincolnshire. The 74 year old has set up camp in a caravan and tent to voice her opposition to the use of unmanned drone aircraft by the military.

The Royal Air Force insists that that while the air base will be used as a ground control station, there are no plans to fly the RAF Reaper in the UK. A spokesperson explained that the system is not autonomous and their use in Afghanistan is as closely controlled as regular planes.

It is operated remotely by trained aircrew. Their use of the aircraft’s weapons is in accordance with the same international law and the same rules of engagement as apply to the RAF’s Tornado aircraft also operating in Afghanistan. Every weapon released is precision guided and every effort is made to minimise harm to civilian people and their property. Royal Air Force Reaper plays a vital role supporting military operations in Afghanistan. It is undoubtedly helping to save the lives of our forces, our allies and those of countless Afghan civilians.

– Royal Air Force spokesperson
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