Members of the Iona community, some Buddhist nuns, and a group of Quakers were among those arrested this week for protesting at a nuclear submarine base. Strathclyde police confirmed that 83 protesters were taken into custody on Tuesday at Faslane submarine base on the Clyde near Glasgow. The group were attempting to blockade the base which houses Trident nuclear warheads. A further two people were arrested yesterday (2 August) for handing out leaflets. The action was organised by the Ploughshares Trident 2000 campaign against nuclear weapons. More than 130 people took part. They included Scottish writer AL Kennedy and Leeds North West Labour MP Harold Best. A base spokesman said: "The protest was peaceful. Strathclyde Police made a number of arrests for obstruction of the north gate." A spokesman for the Dumbarton Procurator Fiscal said a man was due to appear before Helensburgh District Court yesterday. The remaining protesters have been released pending reports to the fiscal's office. One of the protesters arrested was Barbara Sunderland, a Catholic from Henlow in Bedfordshire. She said: "This protest is part of a rolling programme of actions. We began in 1998 and have held a number of protests each year. Our members come from many different faiths and none. Our membership includes people from the Quakers, Buddhists, Christian CND and Pax Christi. We share a common concern about nuclear weapons." One 30-strong group of protesters had walked to Faslane from Aldermaston in Berkshire where Trident warheads are made. They began their journey on 26 June. A Trident Ploughshares spokesperson said: "Again we have been encouraged to see so many people willing to confront this crime against humanity in such a peaceful but determined way. We feel that there is a significant shift away from complacency about Trident. There is more unease about it in official circles and more ordinary people are realising that they can do something about it. We are looking forward to continuing the good work over the next 14 days." For more information about Trident Ploughshares, visit their website at: www.gn.org/tp2000/.
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