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Joanne Baker, Peggie Preston, Tracey Howdle and Carolyn Gelenter who form the "Independent Woman's Delegation to Iraq" will be returned to the UK on Thursday the 24th August. It is possible they will be interviewed by Radio 4 for the pm programme (5:00pm till 6:00pm) at about 5:50pm e-mails that have been sent in during the programme are broadcast. It would be a good opportunity to get your own views aired the e-mail addresse is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Press Release - Independent Women's Delegation - from Amman 23.8.00
The Independent Women's Delegation has now been in Iraq for over a week.
We have visited Baghdad, Basra and Samowa. Our time here has been spent with meeting and talking to ordinary women in their homes, in hospitals and schools. We have witnessed with our own eyes the effects of the embargo on ordinary women and their families.
We have seen schools without books, hospitals without medicines, families without homes and children begging in the streets. We ourselves have experienced regular cuts to electricity in 50 degrees of heat, lack of telecommunications and contact with the outside world, and have borne witness to flights across the so-called 'no fly zones'. We saw a warehouse that had
supplies of food from the UN ‘oil for food’ programme razed to the ground by US forces just a few days before our visit.
As ordinary women ourselves, what we have seen has angered and distressed us. In solidarity with the Iraqi women we have met, we demand to know the answers to these questions:
Why is food being bombed?
Why are the US and UK governments controlling the budget of an entire nation?
Why has only one quarter of the money earned from the sale of oil arrived back in Iraq in the form of goods - around $5.00 per month per person for food?
Why are doctors in hospitals sent veterinary scissors?
Why are women sent contraceptives that are banned in the west?
Can the British and American governments explain to us and the Iraqi women we have met in the south how bombing the ‘no-fly zone’ is protecting them?
There are a million questions to be asked and the people of Iraq deserve answers as do the people of Britain.
The silence surrounding the situation in Iraq is deafening. Our first action on our return to London on the 24th of August at 3:00pm is to knock loudly on the door of 10 Downing Street. We cannot and will not tolerate the bombing or the continuation of sanctions against
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