Monday, February 07, 2005

Greens on Iraq: press release.

>From the office of the Green MEPs

February 7th, 2004


VIOLENCE in Iraq is being driven by the plunder of Iraq’s economic resources
and continued attempts to subject the country to the forces of economic
globalisation, a British Euro-MP has warned.

The resistance to ongoing occupation is fuelled by opposition to economic as
well as political and military factors, according to veteran peace
campaigner Caroline Lucas.

Attacks on Iraqi and US security forces will continue as long as attempts to
prise open Iraqi markets to international trade and foreign investors are
maintained, the Green Party MEP will tell a Stop the War meeting in Bristol
“The violence in Iraq has shown no signs of abating since last weekends
election, dashing Blair’s hopes that the issue will now go away until after
the general election here in the UK.

“The attacks – such as the two reported car bombings which killed 33 Iraqi
police officers just last night – will continue as long as the occupying
forces preside over the take-over of the Iraqi economy by the forces of

Dr Lucas, who is co-president of the European Parliament’s cross-party
groups on peace and globalisation, a member of CND’s national council and
serves on the advisory board for the International Forum on Globalisation,
will make her comments at a public meeting hosted by the Stop the War
coalition in Bristol tonight.

She will join former MP Tony Benn and Edd Cherrie of UK Veterans & Families
For Peace on the panel at the meeting, which takes place at The Council
House, College Green from 7.30pm.

Citing ‘Order 81’, the new Iraqi law prohibiting Iraqi farmers from re-using
saved wheat seeds and obliging them to abandon traditional agricultural
methods in the face of international intellectual property laws granting
wheat patents to US-owned agribusiness firms, Dr Lucas said Iraqi
self-determination is as much about economic as military control.

“Resistance to the occupation will continue as long as allied forces – and
those Iraqis trained by them - continue behaving like an occupation force
and presiding over the transfer of power and resources from Iraq to their
political sponsors ‘back home’,” said Dr Lucas.

“Forcing the oldest agricultural economy in the world to abandon its
traditional practises, justifying doing so by claiming that the effect of
the west’s own sanctions regime is evidence that local methods are failing,
is indicative of the allies real intent in Iraq: opening its economy up to
the forces of economic globalisation and establishing the framework for a
profitable future for US firms doing business in Iraq.

“This has been the agenda of colonial occupation forces throughout history:
and the experience of India and Africa teach us that ‘insurgent’ violence
continues, at terrible human costs, until the occupation ends economically,
politically and militarily.”

The South-East Euro-MP added: “Last week’s historic, if flawed, election was
a step forward for the peoples of Iraq, but only a tiny first step. It’s no
surprise that it hasn’t put a stop to the violence.”

For more information please contact Ben on 01273 671946, 07973 823358 or

Ben Duncan
Media Officer to Caroline Lucas MEP
01273 671946 (office)
07973 823358 (mobile)


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