Campaigns: International Day on Conscientious Objection

Every year, 15th May marks International Conscientious Objection Day - a day to celebrate those who have and those who continue to resist war, especially by refusing to be part of military structures.

WRI Statements

01 May 2003
English

Support to Israeli conscientious objectors is needed

War Resisters' International Executive, 23 February 2003

The Executive Committee of War Resisters' International, the 81-year-old international network of pacifist organisations with 90 affiliates in 45 countries, expressed its grave concern about the situation of conscientious objectors to military service in Israel during its Executive meeting in London this weekend.

Other posts

15 May 2015
English

Photo: Amnesty InternationalPhoto: Amnesty International

15th May is International Conscientious Objection Day - a joint day of action used by peace activists around the world to support those who refuse to be part of the militarist system, as well as to remember and learn from conscientious objectors of past generations.

Those who resist war and preparations for war expose the military for what it is. As Yeook Yang, from World Without War, a WRI affiliate in South Korea, tells us: "In a highly militarised society where any discussion of the military is taboo, conscientious objectors are making it clear that the military exists only to kill."

For us, conscientious objection is part of a wider nonviolent struggle to transform oppressive and violent systems, and show an alternative way.

Take action

Here are some ways you can support conscientious objectors around the world today:

  • attend a CO day event. See our list here in English, Español, Deutsch for info on events in South Korea, Turkey, the USA, Colombia, Britain, Greece, Germany, France and Paraguay.
  • talk about CO day on social media. Use #COday in English or #díaOC in Spanish
  • sign and share our petition for COs in Korea. Find it here in English, and here in German. You can print a version to share with your contacts in person here
  • COs in Colombia are calling for your input into their campaign! They would like short videos of people answering the question: Which service would you provide to your community if you did not have to do military service? More info: http://www.wri-irg.org/co-day-2015
  • share our press release, which focuses on conscientious objection in South Korea: http://www.wri-irg.org/press-release-CO-day-2015
  • sign up to receive CO Alerts, which put pressure on authorities imprisoning and punishing conscientious objectors
15 May 2015
English

Contact Hannah Brock on +44-20-7278 4040 and hannah@wri-irg.org

Today marks International Conscientious Objection day. Worldwide, 92% of all conscientious objectors imprisoned for refusing obligatory military service are in the Republic of Korea (South Korea). An international campaign is calling for their release and the recognition of the right to conscientious objection everywhere.

12 May 2015
English

 

 

 

War Resisters' International, Amnesty International, Connection e.V. and World Without War are petitioning the South Korean Defence Minister, General Han Min-Koo 한민구, calling upon his government to immediately and unconditionally release all conscientious objectors; recognise conscientious objection as a human right inherent to the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; make appropriate provision for conscientious objectors to military service; and to clear the criminal records and provide compensation for conscientious objectors who have been imprisoned for refusing military service in the past.

Sign it online here and download a paper version here.

24 Apr 2015
English

Event in GermanyEvent in GermanyOn 15th May, campaigners around the world will be remembering those who have refused to go to war, and raising awareness of the many who continue to be persecuted and imprisoned for refusing to kill and be part of military structures.

Please let us know (write to Hannah at hannah@wri-irg.org) what events you are planning, and we can publicise them on our website. You can spread the word about the day in advance by using #COday on social media.

Read more...

23 Jan 2015
English

Every year, 15th May is International Conscientious Objection day.

Around the world campaigners will be remembering the generations who refused to go to war, and raising awareness of the many who continue to be persecuted and imprisoned for refusing to kill and be part of military structures.

Please join an event (they will be listed here nearer the time), hold your own, and spread the word about the day!

15 May 2014
English

March on 15 May 2006March on 15 May 200615th May was International Conscientious Objection Day, marked around the world as a day to celebrate those who have and those who continue to resist war, especially by refusing to be part of military structures.

Hundreds of people worldwide are imprisoned for rejecting conscription, or leaving the armed forces having developed a conscientious objection to war. In the Republic of Korea alone, there are more than 400 people incarcarated.

15 May 2013
English

15 May15 MayToday, 15th May, is International Conscientious Objectors Day! Around the world activists are using this joint day of action as an opportunity to raise awareness of conscientious objection, to highlight particular movements for conscientious objection now, and strengthen the international network that is active around 15th May.

15 May 2013
English

Right to conscientious objection still not guaranteed in Europe

Amnesty International, marking the International Conscientious Objectors Day, renews its call on all states to recognise the right to conscientious objection to military service. Nearly two years ago the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) ruled that states must respect the right to conscientious objection as part of their obligation to respect the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, bringing European law in line with international human rights standards.

15 May 2013
English

Today is International Conscientious Objectors day: http://www.wri-irg.org/COsDay2013. Around the world, campaigners are raising awareness of the people who continue to be persecuted and imprisoned for refusing to kill, as well as remembering the generations who refused to go to war.