The organisation wants to draw people’s attention to the fair, which showcases weaponary and is held this week

By Helen Whitehouse  September 15, 2015, Updated September 16, 2015

The London Arms fair is an exhibition of weapons which takes place yearly, and has done since 2005.

It’s the largest exhibition of its kind in the world, and comes under controversy for showcasing weaponry to countries like Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and Azerbajan.

This parody advert from Amnesty seeks to highlight this fact and alert people about why they feel it’s wrong.

Their website states: “For many years, the London Arms Fair (DSEI) has been showcasing arms to all kinds of governments, including known human rights abusers.”

Amnesty International spoofs London arms fair.Campaign: The spoof advert target the annual fair of weapons

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“And that’s not all,” Amnesty continued, before alleging, “We’ve discovered illegal equipment being advertised.

“At some we found cluster bombs, at others it’s been leg irons, electric shock batons and stun guns – tools used to torture people.

“We think people should know what’s happening on their doorstep.”

Along with the advert, Amnesty has taken out newspaper adverts along with posters placed in locations around London.

More than 1,500 companies will exhibit their goods at the fair.

At past fairs, campaigners claim to have discovered a range of illegal torture equipment advertised for sale, including leg iron restraints, stun guns and cluster weapons.

Amnesty International spoofs London arms fair.Colourful Criticism: The clip is all set to cheery music but has a serious point

A petition to stop the government trading in illegal torture equipment is also on the Amnesty site, reaching more than 18,000 signatures.

Oliver Sprague, Amnesty’s Arms Programme Director, says: “We want to see the end of the UK playing the dirty role of matchmaker between trader and torture.”

DSEI responded by saying: “DSEI fully respects the rights of all individuals and groups to engage in lawful protest, and we have always accommodated a number of such groups that wish to make their views known to our attendees in a peaceful manner – this year is no different.

“DSEI is the world’s largest land, sea and air defence and security exhibition.

“The event provides an effective and well regulated platform for the British defence industry which has a turnover of £30bn and employs 233,400 people directly and over 145,000 people indirectly.

“This year DSEI will play host to a variety of cutting edge technologies ranging from defence systems and equipment designed for British forces, through to equipment that will be used by first responders to natural disasters around the world.

“Ministers from across the UK Government will attend DSEI, meeting British companies and underscoring the important role the defence and security sector plays in the UK.”

The fair began on Tuesday and runs until Friday.


Killer facts: The scale of the global arms trade  Amnesty International  August 24, 2015

By Published On: September 21st, 2015Comments Off on Amnesty International launches cheery ‘torture on your doorstep’ spoof ad to target London Arms Fair

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