#ObjectWarCampaign - Update
(14.02.2023) Today we would like to inform you about the current status of the #ObjectWarCampaign - and also make some suggestions for further work.
Current status of the signature collection
The collection of signatures, with which we call on the European institutions to give protection and asylum to conscientious objectors and deserters from Russia, Belarus and Ukraine, has been signed by almost 9,000 people so far. We had already informed you that we had extended the deadline for signatures. This contributed to a significantly higher number of signatures. Signatures can now still be submitted online until 10th of May 2023. Printed copies can be downloaded at https://en.Connection-eV.org/pdfs/ObjectWarCampaign_en.pdf.
Closing action of the campaign now planned for 15 May 2023
We are now planning to hand over the signatures to the European Commission on International Conscientious Objection Day, 15 May. Having made good experience with the action in December 2022 in front of the European Commission in Berlin, we are planning to have actions in Berlin and Brussels. In both cases political performances are planned as well as international participation.
New social media contributions
On the online platform for collecting signatures, signatories have the opportunity to leave a comment. We have used these quotes together with pictures as social media posts. You can find some examples at https://www.facebook.com/Connection.eV. The posts have been prepared in different languages (Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish). A download of all templates can be found at www.Connection-eV.org/campaign/package3.zip. Please enter the following: User: Download, Password: StandWith. You can link it with https://you.wemove.eu/campaigns/russia-belarus-ukraine-protection-and-asylum-for-deserters-and-conscientious-objectors-to-military-service or other language pages on the platform.
First decisions in asylum cases
In the meantime, the first decisions in asylum procedures have become known.
Germany: In one case, the Federal Office for Migration the court ruled positively. However, the applicant was recognised as a refugee mainly because of his political activities. A few days ago, we also received a negative court decision concerning a Russian military draft evader. The Federal Office rejected the application on the grounds that it could not be assumed with considerable probability that the applicant would be compulsorily conscripted into the armed forces. Therefore, despite statements to the contrary by politicians, the authorities are creating facts and rejecting applicants.
Action Day on Belarus on 20 February
Together with the Belarusian organisation Nash Dom, the International Fellowship of Reconciliation, the European Bureau for Conscientious Objection, the Federation for Social Defence and other organisations, we have called for an international day of action on Belarus: No means No - No to the war in Ukraine - No Belarusian troops for the war in Ukraine. Actions are already planned in Vilnius, London and Berlin. We hope you are able to organize something on local level, too. More information is available here.
Part of the activities on 24 February
Actions will take place in many places on 24 February, the anniversary of the start of the war. In various cities, the #ObjectWarCampaign will be centrally involved. We are very happy about this. If there are still requests for materials or similar, please contact us at office@Connection-eV.org.
International Webinar Series
In collaboration the International Fellowship of Reconciliation, Quaker UN Office, Connection e.V. and War Resisters’ International launched the webinar series Conscientious Objection in Times of War on 9 February. The next dates are 3 March (focusing on war in Ukraine) and 23 March (war in Tigray, Eritrea). Read more.
Successful fundraising campaign
Last year Connection e.V. were able to raise donations of more than 150,000 € to work with conscientious objectors and deserters from Russia, Belarus and Ukraine. We thank you very much for the generous support. And we are very pleased that this will enable us to continue our financial support for active groups, such as the Movement for Conscientious Objection Russia, the Belarusian organisation Nash Dom with its project "NO means NO", the Ukrainian Pacifist Movement and act4transformation with its counselling centre in Georgia. So far we have spent about 85,000 € on this.
Counselling hotline and brief information
Our counselling hotline can also be reached at email@example.com and via +49 157 824 702 51: in Russian, English and German. We regularly update the brief information for dissatisfied servicemen and women. Read more at https://en.Connection-eV.org/get.out.2022.
We would be pleased if you kept us informed about planned actions.
Connection e.V.: #ObjectWarCampaign – Update, February 14, 2023