Appeal

INTERNATIONAL CALL FOR AN INDEPENDENT ASSEMBLY OF THE IRAQI PEOPLE 9 April 2004

As the occupation of Iraq enters its second year, the demands of the Iraqis grow clearer every day: an immediate end to the Occupation and free elections  free for all Iraqis to participate and free of US interference.

In the present situation, Iraqis are hostage to the Occupying Forces. They are unable to meet and organize freely and they are denied the right to shape their own future. Furthermore, the political transition process proposed by the US administration is designed to install a tame regime, friendly to US interests and their continued presence inside Iraq.

We  the undersigned activists for peace, religious leaders, intellectuals and academics, writers and journalists, parliamentarians, trade unionists and citizens -- insist on the right of the Iraqis to be free of occupation and free to decide the course of their own history.

We support the call for free elections: free for all Iraqis to participate and free from interference of the Occupying Forces.

We support the call of the Jakarta Peace Consensus  which was affirmed at the European Social Forum in Paris in 2003 and at the Anti-War Assembly at the World Social Forum in Mumbai in 2004 -- for an urgent and independent Assembly of Iraqis, where all sectors of Iraqi society can freely debate and propose the future shape of their State, completely free of interference from the Occupying Forces. This can be the start of a process of building the New Iraq, and a vital first step towards free elections, democracy and sovereignty.

This Assembly must be held in Iraq. However, if this possibility is denied by the Occupying Forces, a Preparatory Conference must be convened outside Iraq.

We guarantee all our efforts to protect the integrity and openness of such a meeting through our support and presence.

We demand an end to the Occupation and we support the Iraqi peoples right to sovereignty and self-determination.

(to sign on to this statement, go to this link: http://www.focusweb.org/int-call/ )

Aminata Dramane Traoré, former government minister and social activist, Mali Chalmers Johnson, writer, USA Chandra Muzzafar, writer and activist, Malaysia Christophe Aguiton, activist, France Dennis Brutus, academic and activist, South Africa/USA Dennis J. Kucinich (Representative), presidential candidate (Democrat), USA Florence Carboni, linguist, Italy Francis Houtart, intellectual and activist, Belgium Gustavo Codas, trade unionist, Brazil Hans von Sponek, former UN humanitarian coordinator in Iraq, Germany Horacio Martins, Brasil Immanuel Wallerstein, writer and activist, USA/France James Petras, writer and activist, USA Jeremy Corbyn, Member of Parliament, UK Jorge Eduardo Saavedra Durão, activist, Brasil José Maria Vigil, liberation theologist and writer, Panama Kamal Chenoy, academic and activist, India Mario Maestri, historian, Brasil Marta Harnecker, writer, Chile Miguel Álvarez Gandara, peace activist, Mexico Miguel Urbano Rodrigues, writer, Portugal Mike Marqusee, writer and activist, UK/USA Naomi Klein, journalist and activist, Canada Nawal El Saadawi, writer and activist, Egypt Noam Chomsky, linguist and writer, USA P.K.Murthy, All India Federation of Trade Unions, India Pedro Casaldáliga (Bishop), religious leader, Brasil Roni Gechtman, academic, Canada Samir Amin, intellectual and activist, Egypt/Senegal Samuel Ruiz, former Bishop of San Cristobal de los Casas, Chiapas, Mexico Saul Landau, academic and activist, USA Sérgio Haddad, international secretary, ABONG, Brasil Shivani, India Susan George, writer and activist, France Walden Bello, academic and activist, Philippines

ITALY

Alfio Nicotra, peace secretary, Rifondazione  Comunista

Luciano Muhlbauer, trade unionist, SinCobas, Italy

Fabio Alberti, peace activist, Bridge to Baghdad, Italy

ITALIAN SENATE

Sen. Luigi Malabarba (Rifondazione Comunista)

Sen. Nicodemo Filippelli (Udeur)

Sen. Daria Bonfietti (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Stefano Boco (Verdi)

Sen. Angelo Flammia (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Aleandro Longhi (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Loredana De Petris (Verdi)

Sen. Antonio Rotondo (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Angelo Flammia (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Paolo Brutti (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Antonio Falomi (Misto)

Sen. Natale Ripamonti (Verdi)

Sen. Elidio De Paoli (Lega Autonomia Lombarda)

Sen. Luigi Marino (Comunisti Italiani)

Sen. Tommaso Sodano (Rifondazione Comunista)

Sen. Alberto Maritati (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Walter Vitali (Democratici di Sinistra)

Sen. Livio Togni (Rifondazione Comunista)

ITALIAN CHAMBER OF DEPUTIES

On. Fausto Bertinotti (Secretary General Rifondazione Comunista) On. Franco Giordano (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Ramon Mantovani (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Giovanni Bellini (Democratici di Sinistra) On. Paolo Cento (Verdi) On. Elettra Deiana (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Titti De Simone (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Pietro Gasperoni (Democratici di Sinistra) On. Luigi Giacco (Democratici di Sinistra) On. Alfonso Gianni (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Giovanna Grignaffini (Democratici di Sinistra) On. Graziella Mascia (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Giorgio Panattoni (Democratici di Sinistra) On. Giuliano Pisapia (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Gabriella Pistone (Comunisti Italiani) On. Ruggero Ruggeri (La Margherita) On. Giovanni Russo Spena (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Tiziana Valpiana (Rifondazione Comunista) On. Nichi Vendola (Rifondazione Comunista)

(to sign on to this statement, go to this link: http://www.focusweb.org/int-call/ )