PEACE WITH IRAN

Canadian Voice of Women for Peace Calls for De-escalation and De-Militarization in the Middle East

On January 3, the United States assassinated Iranian General Qasem Soleimani with a drone strike. He was killed along with Iraqi military leader Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and eight others near the Baghdad airport in Iraq. Iraqi Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi has stated that Soleimani was on his way to meet to discuss ways to ease regional tensions.  The leaders of both countries have expressed outrage, and Iran has retaliated. Civilian lives throughout the region are severely threatened by this escalation of violence. and, even as we write these words, we hear this has already begun. We profoundly grieve these lives so terribly lost and send our heartfelt condolences to their loved ones.

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Canada must stand for peace.  While Canadian Voice of Women for Peace agrees with the call by Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister, François-Philippe Champagne, for “all sides to exercise restraint and pursue de-escalation”, we also, however, call on our government to clearly condemn the US airstrikes as a violation of international law. The people of Iraq have already suffered from 17 years of war and US-occupation that has decimated their economy, infrastructure and natural environment. Military escalation also carries with it the danger of the use of nuclear weapons.

Canadian Voice of Women for Peace calls for a complete withdrawal of the US and NATO troops from the region, including a withdrawal of Canadian troops and special forces currently on mission in Iraq. It is imperative that Canada does not join in or support any US or NATO military action against Iran. Canada should immediately end Operation Impact in Iraq and Syria, Operation Artemis in the Persian Gulf, and its NATO training mission in Iraq.

For peace and security in the region, the Government of Canada must have an independent foreign policy from the US, uphold international law, respect human rights and work through the United Nations. Rather than supporting the arms industry and the environmental devastation caused by military aggression, Canada must support diplomatic initiatives toward de-escalation and de-militarization in the region. We call on the Government of Canada to support the restoration of the Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA), which the U.S. withdrew from in 2018, and to support an end to US sanctions harming the people of Iran.

The escalation of violence which may be precipitated by the assassination and retaliations will only add to the incredible devastation, pain and suffering that decades of unwelcome wars have unleashed on so many innocent people throughout the Middle East, decimating their economies, infrastructure, environment, flora and fauna.  And, of upmost significance, these wars have prevented parents from being able to protect and offer a future to their children. If Canada were to truly base our foreign policy on the best interests of all the world’s children, we would choose peace.  And, as Mahatma Gandhi said so wisely, so many years ago, “There is no path to peacePeace is the path.

Take Action

  1. Contact the Canadian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Francois-Philippe Champagne

Telephone: 613-995-4895

Fax: 613-996-6883

Email: Francois-Philippe.Champagne@parl.gc.ca

Please tell him you do not want war against Iran. Canadian troops should respect the people of Iraq and get out of their country. You want de-escalation and diplomacy to resolve the conflict and reduce the tensions between the US and Iran.  

  1. Contact the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau

Office of the Prime Minister

80 Wellington Street

Ottawa, ON K1A 0A2

Telephone: 613-992-4211 (phone and leave a message)

Email: pm@pm.gc.ca and justin.trudeau@parl.gc.ca

Please tell him you do not want war against Iran. Canadian troops should respect the people of Iraq and get out of their country. You want de-escalation and diplomacy to resolve the conflict and reduce the tensions between the US and Iran.

  1. Participate in the Teach-In “No War With Iran” organized online for January 11 at 3pm EST by journalists and peace activists through ANSWER Coalition. https://www.answercoalition.org/sat_jan_11_teach_in
  1. Participate in the Code Pink Webinar online on Sunday, January 12 at 12pm EST for a conversation between Medea Benjamin and Iranian-American peace activist Leila Zand. https://www.codepink.org/iran_webinar_with_leila
  1. Join the Global Day of Protest – No War Against Iran on Saturday, January 25 and stand for peace in a city near you. https://www.answercoalition.org/iran-jan-25
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