RESOLUTE anti-nuclear campaigners entered their fourth day of protest yesterday at Britain’s controversial nuclear weapons factory AWE Burghfield.
Construction workers and their vehicles have been barred from accessing Burghfield after dozens of campaigners decided to respond to allegedly secret works to upgrade the current Trident nuclear deterrent programme.
According to a Nuclear Information Service report, the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) is helping develop a new weapon called “Mark 4A” at both Burghfield and Aldermaston sites.
At the protest, former Labour MEP Michael McGowan commented on the financing of the site saying: “At a time when people in our city [Leeds] are depending on foodbanks, it is just abhorrent that we should consider spending such astronomical sums on a weapon that we could never use.
“Nuclear weapons are not just immoral but totally outdated and it’s time that we got in line with most countries in the world and disarmed.”
The costs and timetable for the new weapon — said to have greater destructive power than current warheads — are yet to be revealed to Parliament.
Trident is up for review later this year, despite several politicians, including Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, having expressed their opposition to it.
Blockader Angie Zelter told the Star that despite the large police presence “they’re obviously not going to remove us.
“I don’t think they want mass arrests.”
She added that when activists attempted to speak to AWE Burghfield workers, many had their mouths covered in cellotape. “They have been told not to say anything,” explained Ms Zelter.
“I did speak to one of them but basically they were looking away. I think they are scared to speak to us.”