Conscientious Objector to send a postcard to

Posted on | July 30, 2011 | 2 Comments

Mike Lyons has been sentenced to seven months in Colchester military prison for refusing to undertake rifle training. Mike’s request centred on his objection to carrying a rifle as a Medic and orders not allowing him to treat civilians using the triage system. Under Convention IV of the Geneva Convention, there can be no distinction:(1) Persons taking no active part in the hostilities, including members of armed forces who have laid down
their arms and those placed hors de combat by sickness, wounds, detention, or any other cause, shall in all circumstances be treated humanely, without any adverse distinction founded on race, colour, religion or faith, sex, birth or wealth, or any other similar criteria.
(2) The wounded and sick shall be collected and cared for. He also started questioning the legality of the war in Afghanistan. It is not widely know that serving members of the armed forces are allowed under the
UNHRC to develop conscientious objections:
The international definition of conscientious objection was broadened and reaffirmed in 1955 and 1998 when the UNCHR document called “Conscientious Objection to Military Service, United Nations Commission on Human Rights resolution 1998/77” officially recognised that ‘persons (already) performing military service may develop conscientious objections’.
Some critics of Mike have rallied to the accusation that Mike must have been ‘naïve’, that he signed up to it, that, ‘he must have known what he was signing up for’. Lillian, Mike’s wife, would agree that he was ‘naïve’. That he didn’t know what he was signing up for and that this is because Mike is a very different man now, than he was when he signed up in 2005. He has developed and grown as a man. He has ‘developed a conscientious objection’ and his right to do this is protected by the UNHRC.
I would ask that Friends do two things. Write letters of support to Mike Lyons at the address below. Fellow conscientious objector Joey Glenton, who was also court martialled for refusing to fight in Afghanistan says of the letters of support that were sent to him, “Every day that I was in the same prison for the same ‘crime’, the letters made the difference”. Also, to also ask ourselves, what active role are Quakers taking to ensure that serving members of the armed forces have the information and know that they have a right to ‘develop conscientious objection’ ? A right which is protected by UNHRC.
Please write letters of support to Mike Lyons at:


2 Responses to “Conscientious Objector to send a postcard to”

  1. Hayley Kemp
    September 14th, 2011 @ 3:03 pm

    Thanks you so much for posting this piece I wrote urging people to write letters of support to Mike, much appreciated. Please also see this link, A Message from Lillian Lyons:

  2. shan
    January 3rd, 2012 @ 1:12 am

    Dear Hayley
    may peace be with you

    Please forgive my delay in replying.
    I have posted link for Veterans for Peace UK and also Veterans for on site

    feel at liberty to view on front page

    best respects
    yours sincerely
    NPC&PC co-ordinator

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