2 years ago your Editorial staff and International Advisory Board took the courageous and correct step to criticise the practices of your parent company, Reed Elsevier, in the hosting of arms trade fairs.(1)

The arms trade industry as it stands has little good to say for itself. It encourages transgressions of the various Geneva Conventions on the conduct of war, wastes public money, catalyses confl ict and war, institutionalises corruption, glorifi es violence, sustains oppressive and genocidal regimes, and excuses the conduct of torture.

Reed Elsevier is undoubtedly associated with these reprehensible aspects of the arms industry, and by association, so is The Lancet. Your request to Reed Elsevier to “divest itself of all business interests that threaten human, and especially civilian, health and wellbeing” has clearly been ignored.

We therefore write to express our support of your position on this issue and to say that we will be asking Reed Elsevier directly to get out of this sordid industry and instead align itself to the values and principles espoused by The Lancet.

Arturo Quizphe, Alexis Benos, Bridget Lloyd, Ravi Narayan, Claudio Schuftan, *David McCoy, Delen de la Paz, David Legge, Jihad Mashal, Lanny Smith, Maija Kagis, Ghassan Issa, Fran Baum, Alaa Shukrallah, Hani Serag, Prem John, Zafrullah Chowdury, David Sanders, Sarah Shannon, Khor Kok Peng, on behalf of the People’s Health Movement d.mccoy@ucl.ac.uk People’s Health Movement, C/O AHED, # 17, Beirut St Apt 3/501, Heliopolis, Cairo, Egypt

1 The Lancet and The Lancet Editorial Advisory Board. Reed Elsevier and the arms trade. Lancet 2005; 366: 868.

The Lancet Vol 369 March 24, 2007