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Tuesday, 18 June, 2002, 08:06 GMT 09:06 UK
Radiohead join mass protest
Kenyan coffee grower
Campaigners want a fair deal for poor farmers
Thousands of people are descending on Westminster in what organisers hope will be one of the biggest lobbies of Parliament.


People in Britain care passionately about the plight of the world's poorest people

Andrew Pendleton, Christian Aid
Rock group Radiohead are among protesters from across the UK for an appointment with their constituency MPs, to push the case for greater fairness in world trade.

Organisers Trade Justice Movement want trade rules to be re-written to favour the poorest countries and help the environment.

They claim the majority of MPs at Westminster - including a number of cabinet ministers - had agreed to take part in the event.

Giant queue

Organiser Tim Peat said: "Many MPs have cancelled meetings on Wednesday to take part.

"They have told us this is the biggest event of its kind they have seen."

Thom Yorke
Thom Yorke: Well-known campaigner
The organisers hope the queue will stretch along the Thames embankment and across Lambeth Bridge.

Organisers plan to create a "Mexican wave of noise" by shouting slogans, to co-incide with the end of prime minister's question time at 3.30pm.

They have hired a fleet of pedal-powered rickshaws to ferry MPs from the Houses of Parliament to meet constituents in the queue.

Scottish and Welsh MPs will be meeting their constituents at nearby Portcullis House.

'Peaceful' means

Andrew Pendleton, from Christian Aid, one of the agencies behind the Trade Justice Movement, said: "People in Britain care passionately about the plight of the world's poorest people and about the environment and they will demonstrate this to their MPs on 19 June.

"This event will not only show politicians that they have a clear mandate from voters in the UK to act to change international trade rules, but it will also show how people can use peaceful, democratic means to make their point."

The queue will be kept in touch with events through a special radio station, Trade Justice FM on 87.9FM, and mobile phone text alerts.

'Really concerned'

Interest levels have been boosted by Radiohead's involvement.

The band is one of the biggest selling British rock groups with hit albums such as The Bends and OK Computer.

Members of the band, including singer Thom Yorke, are also expected to meet their MPs.

Hilda Carr, a friend of the band who is helping to organise their involvement, said: "They just want to show their support for a cause they are really, really concerned about."


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18 Jun 02 | Business
08 Feb 02 | England
11 Apr 02 | Business
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