Thankyou Alice Springs for breaking the silence about violence of men against women, and the five Peace Pilgrims for breaking the silence about the violence of Pine Gap, write Chris Hawke and Joy Taylor.
It is not open to the jury – now considering verdicts in the trials of five Peace Pilgrims – to find the accused not guilty because they believe the law under which they are being judged is “unfair, unreasonable or too harsh”, said Justice John Reeves in his directions today. KIERAN FINNANE reports.
The defences which the Peace Pilgrims have tried to raise in relation to entering the Pine Gap prohibited area have been ruled out by Justice John Reeves. KIERAN FINNANE reports on this and closing remarks.
If they can establish that they were and that their action was a reasonable way to respond, then that could be a legal defence of their actions. But the Crown contends that it was an ordinary day and night at Pine Gap, business as usual, even if that business does involve drone strikes. KIERAN FINNANE reports.
Justice John Reeves allowed some evidence on the issue from both former senator Scott Ludlam, in the witness box, and former Prime Minister Malcolm Fraser, in a tendered radio interview. KIERAN FINNANE reports.
“Hi, Ken.” “Good morning, Margaret.” Not many cross-examinations begin this way. KIERAN FINNANE reports on an unusual relationship arising from the long history of protest at the Pine Gap military base.
They will be presenting evidence that Raytheon, which they suggest is a large private defence contractor at the base, is also one of the world’s largest suppliers of weapons, and that Pine Gap is involved in providing targeting information for those weapons. However, Crown witness Sgt Kenneth Napier said Raytheon is no longer a "service provider" at the base. KIERAN FINNANE reports.
They were allegedly detected standing on rocks on a steep hill within Pine Gap military base boundaries, playing musical instruments. They face charges with a maximum penalty of seven years on gaol. KIERAN FINNANE reports.
UPDATE 17 November 2017, 9.00am: The trials of the Peace Pilgrims have been raised in the Senate.