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Stop the War Coalition

The Stop the War Coalition is a UK campaign, set up following the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks in the USA. It opposed the American-led action against the Taliban in Afghanistan, and then later the invasion of Iraq.

In association with Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament and the Muslim Association of Britain, it has organised many marches and protest events since its creation, the largest being against the imminent invasion of Iraq on 15th February 2003. This was the largest demonstration ever seen in Britain with between 750,000 and 1,500,000 people. Speakers included Ken Livingstone, Tony Benn, and Charles Kennedy.

After the war began it held another demonstration on the 22nd March, while the turnout for this march was considerably less - at only half a million people turning up - it was noted that this was the largest anti-war demonstration held during wartime and this was with but a week's notice.

Its latest action was during November 2003 climaxing in a march on the 20th protesting against the aggressive foreign policy of George W. Bush and the continued detention of prisoners in Guantanamo Bay which protesters claim is an illegal infringement of human rights and the Geneva conventions. A march past parliament was organised climaxing in a rally in Trafalgar Square and a papier maché statue of George Bush was toppled in an action reminisent of the much televised pulling down of a the statue of Saddam Hussein in Baghdad by American soldiers. Speakers included George Galloway, Alex Salmond and Vietnam war veteran Ron Kovic.

The coalition estimates that 300,000 people were presennt at the demonstration, but this figure is disputed by the police estimate that puts it as low as 100,000 people.

Almost all the major British trade unions are affiliated to the Coalition as well as the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.

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