Press release

International demonstrations April 12, 2003

Peace? But what peace? And at what cost?

Wednesday 2 April 2003, by Collectif Échec à la Guerre

Montreal, April 10, 2003 / The Échec à la guerre Collective invites all Quebecers to
mobilize against what, far from being the liberation of Iraq, is being transformed into a military occupation. The mobilization is more important than ever since the United States have already stated that Syria and Iran in their line of sight. Keeping silent in front of the Iraqi situation amounts to accepting other illegal wars of aggression led by the United States. The Échec à la guerre Collective asks Quebecers to turn out in great numbers in the streets next Saturday, April 12 in order to:

• Denounce the American occupation of Iraq.

• Ask Prime Minister Jean Chrétien to condemn this illegal occupation which
violates international law.

• Demand that Canada play a leadership role in demanding an emergency session of the United Nations’ General Assembly, so that the UN puts an end to the embargo and the "Oil for food" program and installs the mechanisms which will allow the Iraqi people to regain their independence, dignity and control over their natural resources as well as political and legal institutions.

• Denounce the American project of "rebuilding" Iraq.

• Reaffirm our solidarity with the Iraqi people.

We are told that Baghdad has fallen. We are happy that the Iraqi people will not have to suffer more under the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein. We expected the powerful American military superiority to quickly break down the Iraqi army. We knew that Iraq was not the military power that the United States claimed it was. The United States had undertaken this illegal war based on false arguments.

The United Nations’ Charter was violated. The planned occupation only perpetuates the violation of international law. It is necessary to keep on denouncing this crime and the process of colonization being put in place.

It is unacceptable that the United States imposes its will "to rebuild Iraq" at the expense of the Iraqi people. We demand that the United States, the United Kingdom and their allies, bear the financial cost of rebuilding Iraq and that this be done under the aegis of the United Nations. If the war is almost over, the violence and the suffering of the population are far from it.

One has not finished counting the dead, the casualties, the thousands who will still die of the consequences of this wild aggression just like the tens of thousands of Iraqi who are still dying of the consequences of the 1991 war and the sanctions. Let us not forget Afghanistan either which, one year later, is always under American supervision, and lives in violence, insecurity and misery. Moreover, the promised humanitarian aid has never materialized. For all these reasons, let us march in great numbers in the streets Saturday April 12, 2003!

The Montreal departure is scheduled for 1 p.m. at two starting points:
East : gathering in front of Radio-Canada, corner of Wolfe and Rene-Lévesque.
West : gathering at Dominion Square, corner of Peel and Rene-Lévesque.

Elsewhere in Québec (Outaouais, Québec, Rouyn-Noranda, Sherbrooke and Trois-Rivières)


- 30 -
Media contacts:
Denise Babin, AQOCI, (514) 871-1086, ext. 205, or (514) 602-1861 (cell.)
Martine Eloy, FIIQ, 514-238-6877 (cell.)

Spokespersons :
Francine Néméh, (514) 871-1086
or Raymond Legault, (514) 917-3121 (cell.)

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