Conscientious Objection 

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There is no duty to go to the military

Colombia: Brayan Gonzales Blanco recruited irregularly by the army

(19.02.2020) On September 2, 2019 Brayan Gonzales Blanco was irregularly recruited by the Army to perform military service in Battalion No. 13 located in the municipality of Ubalá-Cundinamarca (Colombia). He has been incorporated for five months. In the first week of February, 2020 he began the process to define his military status as a conscientious objector and requested to be released. This has led to the military authorities within the battalion exerting psychological violence on him, putting his emotional well-being at risk.

Please send support letters to the Colombian authorities: https://wri-irg.org/es/programmes/rrtk/co-support-email/2020/desacuartelamiento-para-brayan-gonzales-blanco-reclutado

EBCO criticises failure of European institutions to implement the right to co

Regression and political lack of interest

(14.02.2020) In its Annual Report on Conscientious Objection to Military Service in Europe 2019, the European Bureau for Conscientious Objection (EBCO) red-flags the multiple discriminations that conscientious objectors to military service continue to undergo in Europe. In the political context of a growing importance attached to European defence cooperation, armament projects and joint military operations, the right to conscientious objection to military service risks to be marginalized instead of being consistently perceived as a human right to be monitored and guaranteed.

Kamiljan Ergashov. Photo: Jehovahs Witnesses

Turkmenistan: First 2020 conscientious objector jailing

(27.01.2020) On 13 January, a court in Dashoguz Region of northern Turkmenistan jailed 18-year-old Jehovah’s Witness conscientious objector Kamiljan Ergashov for two years for refusing compulsory military service on grounds of conscience. This is the first known conviction and jailing of a conscientious objector so far in 2020. It is the 20th known such conviction since January 2018.

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Steve Woolford. Photo: Quaker House

USA: Southern peace activists help soldiers become conscientious objectors

(17.01.2020) The South is arguably the engine of the U.S. war machine. The region is home to Fort Bragg, the largest U.S. military base in the world. Southern states supply more soldiers than others; the region is home to three of the five states with the highest military recruitment numbers in 2016 – Florida, Georgia, and Texas. But that also means that the South has long been a center for anti-war activism. In Fayetteville, North Carolina, just outside Fort Bragg, Quaker House has been a hub for peace activists and service members seeking support since 1969.

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