by Committee for Non-Violent Action
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
December 22, 1959
2 pages
Type: Report
Coverage in Africa: Africa, Algeria, Ghana
Coverage outside Africa: United States, France, United Kingdom
Language: English
The report says for many months the government of France has been making preparations for an atom bomb test explosion in the heart of the Algerian Sahara in Africa. The report says the actual text explosion may take place in early January. The report says the independent states of Africa have asked France to cancel plans for the explosion. The report says a recent United Nations resolution urged France to abandon bomb tests in Africa. The report says an international protest team of 18 men and one woman left Accra in Ghana, on December 6, equipped with jeeps, trucks, and other necessary equipment to cross from Ghana through Upper Volta, Niger, French Sudan, and the Algerian Sahara to El Hammoudia (near Reggan) when the explosion of the French atomic bomb is scheduled to take place. The report says on December 9, the Saharan Protest Team crossed the Ghana border into French controlled territory. The report says the Team was stopped by French authorities 16 miles inside French territory, on orders from France. The report says the leader of the Protest Team is the Reverend Michael Scott. The report says other members include Bayard Rustin, the U.S. Secretary of the War Resisters League; William Sutherland, U.S., former private secretary to K.A. Gbedemah, Ghana Finance Minister; Michael Randle, England, Chairman of the Direct Action Committee Against Nuclear Weapons in Great Britain; Francis Hoyland, England, active in the world federalist movement; and Peter Martin, France, on the staff of UNESCO International Work Camp Program. The report says eleven Ghanaians, one Nigerian, and Ntsu Mokhehle, President of the Basutoland National Congress complete the Team. The report says all action will be taken openly and trustingly in the Ghandian spirit of a nonviolent attempt to effect needed change by speaking to the best in all men. The report says the Protest Team is asking the governments of the United States, the Soviet Union, and Britain to abandon all nuclear tests and weapons, without waiting for a joint agreement; the France and China abandon the manufacture of all nuclear weapons, regardless of the actions of the three nuclear powers; and that France not carry out nuclear bomb explosions in the Sahara, or elsewhere. The report says further information about the Sahara Protest Team can be secured from George Willoughby, Chairman of the Committee for Nonviolent Action. The report discusses the Direct Action Committee Against Nuclear Weapons, the Uganda National Congress, Kwame Nkrumah, Reverend Martin Luther King, Martin Niemoellar, Lord Bertrand Russell, Linus Pauling, Sir Osei Agyeman-Prempeh, Jayaprakash Narayan, Lord Boyd Orr, Nii Tackie-Komey, Phillip Toynbee, A.J. Muste, the American Fellowship of Reconciliation, and the American Committee for Nonviolent Action. [Note: Reggan is presumably Reggane.]
Collection: Winifred Courtney Collection, National Archives of Namibia