STATEMENT ON DEVELOPMENTS IN IRAQ



 


       The International Association of Democratic Lawyers [IADL], with membership in over  ninety-six countries and in consultative status with ECOSOC and represented at UNICEF and UNESCO, is seriously concerned with the  developments in Iraq, which have resulted in its occupation by the United States.  

REITERATING  our unequivocal condemnation of the U.S./U.K.-led  Coalition's illegal, unjustified, and immoral war against the sovereign state of Iraq and its people as an" Act of Aggression," the "supreme international crime" (International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg); and

RECOGNIZING that the   unilateral actions of the U.S./U.K.-led Coalition are in violation of international law, including the U.N. Charter,   Art.  2 (4) [refraining from the use  of force against sovereign states], Art. 2 (3) [the use of peaceful means to settle  disputes between Members], Art. 33 [duty to exhaust  peaceful settlement of disputes], and Art. 39 [the power to determine threats to peace or acts of aggression rests with the Security Council]; and


             RECOGNIZING that  there is no legal justification for the U.S./U.K.-led
 

Coalition's war against Iraq  under Security Council Resolution 1441, and that the inspections were progressing under this unanimous Security Council mandate; and
 

             NOTING that no chemical, biological or nuclear weapons of mass
 

destruction  have been found; and
 

             BELIEVING that the  purpose of the military action by U.S./U.K. and their
 

allies  was never to disarm  but to  occupy Iraq, to establish a puppet regime,  to take control of world's second largest oil resources of Iraq and to impose their hegemony more firmly on the strategic West Asia; and

ACKNOWLEDGING that any opposition which  existed to Saddam Hussein's rule does not legitimise the  U.S/U.K.-led Coalition's aggression and occupation of a sovereign state; and
 

            AFFIRMING  that  resolution of Iraq's internal affairs is a matter for its people 
 

to determine, without any outside interference including from the U.S.  U.K. or their allies; and


DEPLORING that the war of aggression by U.S./U.K/Spain/Australia and their allies   has endangered the international peace and security of the people of Iraq, the entire region and the world; and

            FURTHER DEPLORING the deliberate destruction, looting and burning of
            priceless historical treasures including those of the two ancient civilisations       of the world, which is a common heritage of entire humanity; and


           FURTHER DEPLORING the killing of journalists who, in the discharge of their duty, were so bravely reporting the war of aggression and the crimes being committed by the Coalition forces, as a violation of Human Rights and of the rights to freedom of speech and information;


IADL FIRMLY BELIEVES that the leaders of the U.S., U.K., Spain,  and Australia - George W. Bush Jr.,  Tony Blair, Jose Maria Aznar, John Howard - and other leaders of the Coalition and their  officials, both military and civil, must be held accountable for their Acts of Aggression, Crimes Against Peace, War Crimes, Crimes Against Humanity, Grave Breaches of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, and be prosecuted in appropriate international and national fora.


             These crimes include, but are not limited to:

 

Crimes of Aggression, as defined in U.N.G.A. Res. 3314, Art.1 (1974), and in violation of Crimes Against Peace (Charter of the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Art. 6[a]) and the Draft Code of Crimes Against the Peace and Security of Mankind, 1996 (Art. 16);
 

             War Crimes, in violation of the Charter of the International Military Tribunal
 

at Nuremberg, Art. 6 (b), and the  Rome Treaty for the International Criminal Court, Art. 8;
 


             Crimes Against Humanity, in violation of the Charter of the International
 

Military Tribunal at Nuremberg, Art. 6 (c), and the Rome Treaty for the International Criminal Court, Art. 7;
 


             Crimes against Prisoners of War, including acts in contravention of the
 

Convention against Torture, and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (1984) and the Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War (1949), Arts. 13 and 14, as illustrated by the photograph of captured Iraqi fighters, stripped to their underwear, kneeling and bound, with their faces in the dirt, in the New York Times, 10 April 2003, p. B1;
 

Crimes against Civilians, including the use of cluster bombs, and depleted

uranium, and the bombing of civilian targets such as markets and residential areas, with such force and destruction that the number of Iraqi civilians killed can not yet be determined; and in violation of the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (1949) and Protocol I, including Art. 54 [Protection of objections indispensable to the survival of the civilian population] and Art, 55 [Protection of the natural environment};

             WHEREAS  IADL  condemns the U.S. "selective" standard of aggressively
 

opposing the International Criminal Court, while the U.S. calls for War Crimes Tribunals for Iraqi leaders, and

              IADL joins  and supports the millions of peace-loving people who
 

continue to demonstrate their opposition to this illegal war and occupation of Iraq, and

             CALLS FOR:

 
1. PEOPLES'  WAR CRIMES TRIBUNALS to be convened at the earliest by the peoples' movements for peace, to try George W. Bush, Tony Blair, Jose Maria Aznar  and John Howard and other leaders of the Alliance for their Crimes.

2. THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT to exercise its jurisdiction, pursuant to the Rome Treaty, Art. 13,  over the criminal allegations against Tony Blair, Jose Maria Aznar, John Howard and other leaders of the Coalition and  its  Prosecutor to immediately commence  an  investigation,  pursuant to the Rome Treaty, Art. 15.

3.  THE IMMEDIATE WITHDRAWAL OF ALL FOREIGN MILITARY FORCES and AN END TO U.S/U.K. OCCUPATION OF IRAQ, and SUPPORT for the RIGHT of SELF-DETERMINATION of the Iraqi people, including their right to control Iraq's natural resources.

             4.  The U.N. to  exercise its authority as the ONLY LEGITIMATE ENTITY    
 

to oversee  the reconstruction and relief efforts, including any transitional government in Iraq and to ensure that Syria or no other country in the Region is threatened by the leaders of the Alliance of Aggression .



    JITENDRA SHARMA
    PRESIDENT, IADL
    Issued at New Delhi on the 19th day of April, 2003