Monday, 21 August 2017

Civic group: Brno should not support arms trading fair

ČTK |
17 May 2017

Brno, May 16 (CTK) - The Brno City should stop providing the premises for the International Defence and Security Technologies Fair (IDET) because some of the arms sold based on deals made at the fair end up in regions affected by armed conflicts or in the hands of dictators, the Nesehnuti group said on Tuesday.

In its press release, the group criticises that the participants in the fair include countries that violate human rights.

Jiri Smetana, spokesman for the organising BVV Trade Fairs Brno municipal firm, said the IDET is a defence fair, not a fair of arms dealers.

The IDET fair will be held at the Brno Exhibition Centre from May 31 to June 2.

"We consider it unfortunate that arms trading is in fact organised with the direct support from the city that otherwise strives for the observance of very different values," Hana Svacinkova, from Nesehnuti, writes.

The group calls on the local people to support the protest against the fact that the fair of arms makers is organised by a firm owned by the city on municipal land.

Smetana said the land is not owned by the city but by the BVV Trade Fairs Brno.

He said the IDET, ISET and PYROS integrated rescue systems fairs are one of the two major groups of defence and security fairs in Central Europe. They primarily focus on the protection of inhabitants both home and abroad.

Smetana said the event was held under the auspices of the prime minister, the president, the defence and industry ministries, the military staff and the police. Thanks to the participation of NATO mission and the European Defense Agency (EDA), the IDET contributes to the Czech industry's involvement in the arming of NATO and EU countries, he added.

The Stop IDET campaign will culminate with a street gathering in the centre of the city one day before the opening of the IDET. Further events will be held during the fair.

The previous IDET fair was held in May 2015. It has over 27,000 visitors and 488 firms from 35 countries took part in it, according to the official report. It was accompanied with protests by Nesehnuti then, too.

Copyright 2015 by the Czech News Agency (ČTK). All rights reserved.
Copying, dissemination or other publication of this article or parts thereof without the prior written consent of ČTK is expressly forbidden. The Prague Daily Monitor is not responsible for its content.