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________________________________________________________________________ Committee starts solidarity drive to help Iraq Oula Al Farawati (Jordan Times, 19 December 1999) AMMAN — The National Jordanian Committee for the Defence of Iraq has begun a campaign in solidarity with Iraq, Rajai Naffa', deputy head of the committee for governorates' affairs said on Saturday. The campaign started on Dec. 12 and will continue until Jan. 17 (the day the allied forces launched attacks on Iraq in 1991 following its invasion of Kuwait the previous summer). The several activities of the drive include a national campaign to collect one million pencils for the children of Iraq. "We've chosen a pencil to symbolise the need to lift the unfair embargo on Iraq," Naffa' said. "The kind of help is not our main concern, we did not collect food or medical aid because Iraq has refused this kind of help expressing their need to have the sanctions lifted rather than temporary help," he added. Boxes to collect the pencils will be placed in Amman and other cities at various institutional locations, such as at political party headquarters, social, community or sports clubs like Baqa'a and Wihdat, and at newspapers like Al Ra'i and Al Dustour who have already voiced readiness to support the campaign. The organisers said they would place posters around the Kingdom asking people to contribute pencils to the initiative. The committee also plans to collect 100,000 signatures on an appeal that will be presented to the Lower House speaker asking the deputies to apply the recommendations of the Emergency Arab Parliamentary Union session held in Amman in 1998 and which recommended lifting the U.S.-led embargo on Iraq. "We will present another appeal to Arab leaders asking them to hold an urgent comprehensive summit. In addition, we plan to organise a motorcade to the Iraqi borders to deliver the million pencils," Naffa' said. The committee plans to invite a prominent Arab intellectual to give several talks in Amman and other governorates on the effects of nearly a decade of sanctions on Iraq and the importance of strengthening the public effort to lift the embargo. It is also planning to present a memorandum to the government asking it to apply Article 50 of U.N Charter that states if a country has suffered losses because of an embargo on another country, the former can petition the U.N to exempt it from observing the conditions of the embargo on the latter. "Jordan has been really hurt because of the embargo on Iraq, and we hope to activate that article in order to protect its economic interests with Iraq," Naffa' said. The committee will also hold related photo and film exhibitions in Amman as well as other governerates. -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq For removal from list, email email@example.com Full archive and list instructions are available from the CASI website: http://welcome.to/casi