We, the undersigned Arab women's organisations, call for a stop to the planned military aggression against Iraq and for peace in our region. We are convinced that a military attack against Iraq will destroy a whole nation, including its women and children, and will result in an appalling humanitarian tragedy.
Women throughout the Arab world categorically condemn American-led attempts that target the integrity of the Arab world by undermining its sovereignty, and rupturing its national unity. The American administration is attempting to create any pretext to justify its onslaught on the Iraqi people and to occupy their land only to control their oil fields, whilst totally disregarding the destruction and annihilation which the Iraqi people will be exposed to. This, after the extreme suffering that the Iraqi population has had to endure for the past twelve years as a result of the suffocating economic sanctions. Infant and child mortality rates in Iraq are the highest in the world. The mortality rate for Iraqi children under five years old is 130 per 1,000, compared with 8 per 1,000 for American children.
A military invasion would not stop at Iraq. Israel will seize this golden opportunity to continue its Zionist plans for the transfer of the Palestinian people from their lands. Moreover, Bush's plans will not stop at regime change in Iraq but will go beyond this to re-map the entire Arab region. Despite the fact that no evidence has been found to prove that Iraq possesses weapons of mass destruction, the United States insists on preparing for the invasion of Iraq.
How can the American administration justify the estimated cost of 200 billion dollars of a war against Iraq? How can this be justified at a time when there are more than 1.2 billion people worldwide who live below the poverty line (i.e. with a daily income of less than one dollar); at a time when there are more than 149 million children in the developing countries suffering from malnutrition; over 1.1 billion people who do not have access to potable water, and over 2.4 billion people without sanitation?
Arab women, like all women of the world, act as safety valves for the protection of humanity in general, and the children of the world in particular, against the degradation of the world's natural resources which God has created for all of us to safeguard, not to destroy. Women have always been in the front line of calls for peace and for the protection of the environment and natural resources. Thus, we, Arab women say NO to the war against Iraq because we are certain that when armies invade, only destruction will prevail.
We appeal to all the women of the world to support us, Arab women, in our call to stop the planned American-led aggression against Iraq. We call on all women to voice their unequivocal condemnation of any military attack on Iraq and the resultant inevitable killing of more innocent civilians.
Alliance for Arab Women, Egypt
Egyptian Women's Legal Aid Centre, Egypt
Association for Support of Community Participation, Egypt
New Woman's Research Center, Egypt
Egyptian Democratic and Social Center, Egypt
Association for Women and Society, Egypt
El-Nadeem Center for Psychological Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence, Egypt
Association for the Development and Enhancement of Women, Egypt
Forum of Associations for Women's Development, Egypt