For Immediate Release
American Delegation Will Fast in Islamabad to Atone for US Drone Strikes
WASHINGTON - More than a dozen American peace delegates visiting Pakistan to witness the damage wrought by U.S. drone attacks will fast from sunrise to sunset Tuesday, Oct. 9, in front of the Islamabad Press Club, Sector F-6. They will sing songs of peace, display pictures of the more than 160 Pakistani children who have been killed by American drones, and extend a message of peace and solidarity to passersby.
“We are very aware that there is a deep and justified feeling among Muslims worldwide that the Western world does not understand or respect them,” said Jody Mackey, who is active with the Fellowship of Reconciliation in Olympia, WA; before traveling to Pakistan, she was in Kabul with the Afghan Peace Volunteers. “It seems only appropriate that we express our sorrow for the horrific damage we have done to innocent Pakistani people, particularly those in Waziristan, by fasting according to the Islamic tradition followed during Ramadan.”
The Americans are among a delegation of 31 who joined political leader Imran Khan and other Pakistanis at a rally against U.S. drone strikes in Hatala, Pakistan, near the border between D.I. Khan and South Waziristan. This was the first time that the Pakistani government has admitted foreigners into the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) in nearly a decade.
“I have never fasted before, but I want to do this as a small, symbolic act to express my solidarity with the Pakistani people and my commitment to educate my fellow Americans upon my return home about the human impact of our foreign policy,” said Pam Bailey, a freelance journalist from Alexandria, VA. “We will do everything we can to lobby our government to stop violating Pakistani sovereignty and destroying the lives of innocents.”
Delegates are available for interviews, and updates from the trip along with multimedia content are regularly posted on http://www.droneswatch.org.
CODEPINK is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, stop new wars, and redirect our resources into healthcare, education, green jobs and other life-affirming activities. CODEPINK rejects foreign policies based on domination and aggression, and instead calls for policies based on diplomacy, compassion and a commitment to international law. With an emphasis on joy and humor, CODEPINK women and men seek to activate, amplify and inspire a community of peacemakers through creative campaigns and a commitment to non-violence.