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White poppy wearers to hold Alternative Remembrance Sunday Ceremony

White poppy wreaths

White poppy wearers to hold Alternative Remembrance Sunday Ceremony

Wreaths of white poppy are being laid around Britain, ahead of the online Alternative Remembrance Ceremony at noon on Sunday.

The ceremony will be focused on remembering all victims of war, both civilian and military, of all nationalities, as well as making a commitment to peace.

The Peace Pledge Union, who are organising the event, predicted an unusually high turnout in a year in which everyone has been reminded of the need to work internationally to tackle global problems.

The ceremony will feature contributions from Yemeni-Scouse poet Amina Atiq and singer-songwriter Penny Stone. Both will bring words and reflections from current war zones as participants remember both present and past wars.

It will also include footage of white poppy wreaths being laid around Britain, in venues include Tavistock Square in London, where the ceremony is normally held, as well as locations including Edinburgh, Leicester, Bridgend and Aldershot.

White poppies represent remembrance for all victims of war, a commitment to peace and a rejection of any attempt to celebrate war.

The PPU has said that this year's Remembrance Sunday risks becoming a “festival of forgetting” if current wars such as the conflict in Yemen are not remembered.

Amina Atiq, a Yemeni-Scouse poet who will perform her poetry at the ceremony, said:

“The Peace Pledge Union's focus on Yemen is a reminder that while we remember the past, our present is our future to change. Yemen is a manmade disaster and the war needs to end. The vulnerable pay the price yet suppliers of arms are profiteers.

“Our UK government cannot continue with supplying arms and fuelling war in Yemen while remembering the past of those who tragically lost their lives in war. Peace will not be achieved by war and violence. Everyone has a right to live.”

Penny Stone, a Scottish singer-songwriter who will also perform as part of the ceremony, said:

“My grandfather fought in World War One, and I can only truly honour his experiences if I am working to make peace a reality everywhere, for everyone.

“I wear a white poppy because I want to remember all victims of war without the institutionalised glorification that so often happens around Remembrance Day. Having space for alternative remembrance allows us to come together and grieve the losses whilst also committing to seeking alternatives to war and violence. And it gives us space to recommit to investing in real social justice that redistributes the resources in our local and global communities, reducing the likelihood of violence everywhere.”

Everyone is welcome to join the online Alternative Remembrance Sunday Ceremony at 12.00 noon on Sunday 8th November. Details of how to join are available here.