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Bell X1 support Oxfam's Control Arms Campaign

Bell X1

Story by Jack Foley

IRISH musicians Bell X1 have recently taken Oxfam on tour with them to highlight the Control Arms Campaign.

The band has also donated a free non-album track to Oxfam’s Generation Why? website and have also been talking about their involvement with the charity.

The campaign aims to reaise awareness that there are currently around 639 million small arms and light weapons in the world today. Eight million more are produced every year.

Guns have never been so easy to obtain. Without strict control these weapons will continue to fuel violent conflict, state repression, crime, and domestic abuse.

The global arms trade that brings these weapons into the hands of killers is big business. Per year, the value of global authorised arms exports is $21 billion.

Keen to do what they could to help, Bell X1 invited Generation Why on their UK tour in March 2006 to further the awareness campaign.

The tour coincided with the 100 Days Countdown for Control Arms, in the build up to the United Nations Review Conference on June 26 in New York.

Explains lead singer, Paul Noonan: “The arms trade is something I’ve been interested in for a while, as it fuels much injustice and suffering worldwide.

“Governments spend huge portions of their budget on arms, from the American super-power to the poorest of third world countries.

“Many arms manufacturers were once at least partly state-owned, and retain cosy ties with governments that pay them huge amounts of money for their arms, and also facilitate the export of arms.

“Western governments must be called to task for granting arms export licenses in cases where doing so fuels tyranny and oppression, such as in Israel and Indonesia.”

To read the full interview and to hear the non-album track (for free), click here

Read our review of Bell X1’s Flock