Chile reformed its military service seven years ago, to focus recruitment for military service on volunteers. Ever since, Chile's armed forces were able to fill their ranks entirely with volunteers, although generally a process of conscription was started in October to select potential conscripts as a backup. In October 2008, 70,461 youth were chosen in the "sorteo general" (recruitment lottery) and had to report to the recruitment authorities, but in the end nobody was called up for military service against his will. This was repeated in the following years.
In October, War Resisters' International again visited Egypt, in support of imprisoned pacifist blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad, who is on hunger strike since 23 August 2011. The objective was to be present during the appeal hearing at the military court on 11 October 2011, and to show solidarity.
War Resisters International are looking for individuals and organisations to collaborate on and contribute to its 2012 conference 'Countering the Militarisation of Youth'. One of the aims of the project is to create a snap shot of the ways in which youth are being increasingly militarised, to that end we would welcome hearing from you about developments in your area.
For more than 50 years, War Resisters' International has publicised the names and stories of prisoners of peace on 1 December - Prisoners for Peace Day.
On 1 December, put aside at least one hour and write at least four cards to prisoners;
Get your peace group or class or meeting place to organise a card-writing session;
Set up a stall in your town centre, perform a bit of street theatre, or do whatever else it takes to attract attention and interest.
Sending cards and letters
In the previous month(s), the WRI office issued the following co-alerts:
(a full archive of co-alerts is available at wri-irg.org/news/alerts)
02 Nov 2011: EGYPT: Case against imprisoned pacifist blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad again adjourned after more than 70 days of hunger strike
20 Oct 2011: EGYPT: Imprisoned blogger Maikel Nabil Sanad to be sent to psychiatric hospital / trial postponed to 1 November