QUAKERS ACROSS BRITAIN are supporting peaceful protestors who took nonviolent action to demand an end to new oil and gas projects in the UK and have been found guilty of breaking an injunction.
Four Quakers were among 51 Just Stop Oil protestors who sat outside Kingsbury Oil Terminal holding banners and were remanded to prison by high court judges for refusing to comply with court proceedings.
Rajan Naidu from Birmingham was sentenced to 34 days in prison, after being found guilty of his third breach of the injunction on 14 September.
The injunction outlaws any protest activity near Kingsbury Oil Terminal, the largest inland oil storage depot in the country. It was granted to North Warwickshire Borough Council in April.
Sue Hampton of Berkhamsted, Arne Springorum of Wandsworth and Phil Laurie of Faversham, received suspended sentences and costs of over £400.
Following the case, Paul Parker, recording clerk for Quakers in Britain, said, “Quakers respect the laws of the state but our first loyalty is to God’s purposes. Sometimes things which are legally wrong can be morally right. We acknowledge our Friends’ action as rooted in their faith, and their willingness to face its consequences and uphold Rajan Naidu as he serves his prison sentence.
“As a faith community we will continue to challenge the government on its environmental policies, and to support those already being affected by climate breakdown globally.”
Sue Hampton said: “I am a grandmother. I used to be a primary school teacher. I have always loved and felt the need to protect children. When I see pictures like those of children in the floods in Pakistan, I feel absolutely compelled to do whatever I can to protect them. Justice is love in action. Love requires us to serve.”
Many Quakers are deeply concerned about climate breakdown. Quakers in Britain, the national body, works for climate justice as part of the Quaker commitment to equality and to a peaceful sustainable world.
Quakers in Britain calls on the UK government to rapidly phase out fossil fuels, invest in renewable energy and energy efficiency, and support a loss and damage fund to compensate communities experiencing the devastating impacts of the climate crisis.
Subject to a meeting this weekend, the arrests will be recorded in the Quakers’ Court and Prison Register, a historic list of Quakers who have broken the law because of their commitment to their faith.
* More about Quaker work on climate justice here.
* Source: Quakers in Britain