Stellt die Friedensfragen!

Stoppt den drohenden Irakkrieg – Friedensmission „in letzter Minute“

Erstellt am 12.03.2003 von Andreas Hermann Landl
Dieser Artikel wurde 1684 mal gelesen und am 13.07.2010 zuletzt geändert.

Leo Gabriel aus Wien ist der Organisator des europäischen Teils der
Friedensmission „in letzter Minute“, an der sich auch bekannte Aktiivsten aus den Philippinen, Thailand, Indonesien, Indien und Pakistan – unter ihnen Walden Bello – beteiligen.

Leo Gabriels Mitarbeiterin in Wien informierte, dass er am vergangenen Samstag nach Bagdad geflogen ist. Zurzeit gibt es keine e-mail-Verbindung mit ihm.

Sie erwartet aber, dass er bis zum Freitag einen Bericht sendet. Matthias Reichl wird sich bemühen, auch über die beteiligte Organisation „Focus on Global South“ in Thailand deren Informationen zu bekommen. Eine erste Presseaussendung übermittelte
Matthias Reichl


11 March 2003

Asian peace mission flies to Iraq in last-ditch effort to stop war

WHILE EMBASSY STAFF, migrant workers, and other international non-government
organizations are packing up to leave Iraq, a group of prominent Asian
intellectuals, parliamentarians, civil society leaders, and activists are
flying to Baghdad in a desperate last-ditch effort to avert the war.

Composed of delegates from the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, India, and
Pakistan, the team will be in Iraq from March 14 to 18. The peace mission
hopes to express a powerful last-minute appeal to prevent war through a
strong symbolic action at a critical time. It will serve as a live message
of solidarity from fellow Asians to the Iraqi people in their hour of need.

While in Baghdad, the team will visit hospitals, orphanages, schools, and
interact with Iraqi civilians who will likely be killed as „collateral
damage“ when the bombs start to rain down on their city. US war plans call
for the launching of 3,000 cruise missiles for Baghdad in the first 48 hours
and US generals have been quoted as saying that civilian casualties will be
inevitable consequences of the looming war. According to the military
officer who drew up the strategy, the effect would be „rather like the
nuclear weapons at Hiroshima.“

The mission members will also hold dialogues with officials from UN agencies
and other humanitarian organizations who have warned that a war on Iraq will
have catastrophic consequences for the Iraqi people.

The peace mission will link up with a number of other contingents who are
also currently in Baghdad. This includes a Thai parliamentary and civil
society delegation, an international peace delegation from Europe headed by
Austrian activist Leo Gabriel, and the Iraqi Peace Teams organized by the
American organization Voices in the Wilderness.

„The clouds of war may now be about to burst, but so long as there is the
slightest sliver of hope for peace, we must be prepared to seize it or
history will never forgive us. This is the desperate dream that animates
this mission,“ says Prof. Walden Bello, one of Asia¹s most recognized
progressive intellectuals and executive director of Focus on the Global

Leading the mission is Congressman Loretta Ann Rosales, who was among those
who fought the Marcos dictatorship and is now the Akbayan! party-list
representative in the Philippine Congress.

The composition of the peace mission reflects the growing anxiety about
escalating tension and hostilities in a number of countries in Asia. Among
its members include Hussin Amin, a parliamentarian from the Philippine
province of Sulu, who opposes the scheduled deployment of US combat troops
to wage war against the extremist Abu Sayaff group.

The mission also includes two former high-ranking military officers from a
potential flashpoint of war, India and Pakistan, and who have since become
committed and outspoken peace activists. Zulfiqar Gondal is a retired Major
and is now a Member of Parliament of Pakistan. Retired Admiral Laxminarayan
Ramdas¹ was former chief of the Indian Navy and is now very active in
anti-war organizations.

In Baghdad, the mission will link up with members of the Nonviolent
Peaceforce from South Korea, which is now getting more and more worried
about the heightening conflict between North Korea and the United States.

Another member of the team, Dita Sari, is a prominent labor leader from
Indonesia, the world¹s largest Muslim country. Jaran Ditapichai is National
Human Rights Commissioner of Thailand. Among those who will be affected
adversely by this war will be migrant contract workers in the Middle East
from countries like Indonesia, Pakistan, Thailand, and the Philippines.

After the mission, the members of the delegation are expected to issue a
report and conduct speaking tours in their respective countries, in Asia,
and other parts of the world to share their experiences. In addition, a
documentary report to be prepared by a professional television team that
will be accompanying the mission will be broadcast and distributed around
the region End

1. Congressman Hussin Amin, Philippine House of Representatives
2. Dr Walden Bello, Executive Director, Focus on the Global South
3. Jaran Ditapichai, National Human Rights Commissioner (Thailand)
4. Zulfiqar Gondal, Member of Parliament, Pakistan
5. Admiral (Ret.) Laxminarayan Ramdas, former chief of the Indian Navy
6. Congresswoman Loretta Rosales, Akbayan! party-list representative and
head of the Committee on Human Rights, Philippine House of Representatives
7. Dita Sari, respected labor leader from Indonesia

1. Cong. Loretta Ann P. Rosales (Akbayan! party-list representative)
2. Dr. Walden Bello, Executive Director Focus on the Global South
3. Cong. Hussin Amin (1st district, Sulu)

FOR MORE INFORMATION, please contact Focus on the Global South:

Marylou Malig

Herbert Docena

Focus on the Global South (FOCUS)
c/o CUSRI, Chulalongkorn University
Bangkok 10330 THAILAND
Tel: 662 218 7363/7364/7365/7383
Fax: 662 255 9976
Mobile: +6695215702 (in bangkok)
+639178996568 (in manila)

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Posted in Friedensarbeit, Friedensbewegung, Krisenregion

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