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Dear friends I write today after returning from an august delegation to Iraq and a visit with the dozen Voices folks conducting a 40 day fast outside the UN in NYC. I was amazed by the spirit of survival, strength, and sincerity in the people I was with in both Manhattan and in Baghdad. Please consider the following actions, in solidarity with those in NYC and throughout the US fasting and who today, Wednesday 22, took part in another act of civil disobedience on the steps of the US Mission to the UN. 1) Sign and circulate the "Pax Christi petition" that Hans Von Sponeck will present in DC this October. It is on the front page of www.vitw.org 2) Contact your local representatives and encoourage them to contact the US Mission , or call James Cunningham's office, acting US ambassador to the UN at 212 415 4000, press 2 , and type in CUNNINGHAM, and very politely encourage a meeting with those maintaing a daily vigil, many of whom offer first hand experience from travel to Iraq, can supply comprehensive facts and research, and have continual correspondence with UN official both in Iraq and throughout the world. 3) Help circulate following Press Release on today's actions and continue to support fasters at firstname.lastname@example.org in peace danny muller w/ Voices in the Wilderness ***************************************************** Ten Arrested at US Mission to the UN Protesting Sanctions of Iraq For Immediate Release, New York City—Wednesday, August 22, 2001, 11:00 a.m., Ten members of Voices in the Wilderness have just been arrested after bringing a symbolic meal of lentils and rice to the steps of the US Mission to the UN, inviting members of the staff and the Ambassador’s office to share the meal across from the US Mission to the UN, (45th Street and First Avenue). Members of the group are on the seventeenth day of a 40 day fast calling for an end to sanctions against Iraq. Last week, the NYPD arrested twelve people for approaching the steps of the US Mission with their meal and their message. Charged with obstruction and criminal trespass, they face trial on September 20. Fasters returned today to continue bringing their message to the US Mission, some of them having recently travelled to Iraq, in direct violation of US law and the 11 year embargo. Among them , Kathy Kelly, nominated for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, states, “We are trying to encourage the member states of the UN to ‘break ranks’ with the US in its insistence on endless sanctions for Iraq. We also ask for the US to seek reconciliation with the peoples of Iraq, to stop the continued bombing and terror, and to embrace peaceful means to solve any conflict between the two nations.” Those arrested are Ceylon Mooney, Memphis, TN, Kathy Kelly, Chicago, IL, MikiLu Peters, Chicago, IL, Nate Peters, Chicago, IL, Rev. Jerry Zawada, OFM, Hammond, IN, Peter De Mott, Ithaca, NY, Athir Shayota, Harlem, NY, Ed Lewinson, New Jersey, Felton Davis, New York, NY, Cynthia Banas, Vernon, NY. In an August 20, 2001 letter of invitation to the US Mission to the UN, the group wrote: We are again inviting you to partake with us in a simple meal of cooked lentils, rice, and bread, along with unpurified water, (we don’t want to drink it and neither do Iraqi people). The meal symbolizes our concern because many Iraqis have subsisted on this food for eleven years. It also represents our earnest interest in breaking bread with you. We’d like to discuss the perspective of Mr.Hubert Vedrine, the French Foreign Minister, who stated: “Economic sanctions on Iraq are “cruel, ineffective and dangerous: they are cruel because they punish exclusively Iraqi people and the weakest among them. They are ineffective because they don’t touch the regime which is not encouraged to cooperate and they are dangerous because they…accentuate the disintegration of Iraqi society.” (Hubert Vedrine, August 2, 2000, Reuters) Several of us have seen and heard, first hand, evidence of the disintegration Mr.Vedrine deplores. We mean you no harm or inconvenience in wanting to talk with you. And of course we are easily available as we vigil outside your building each day. For more information, call the Breaking Ranks cell phone numbers or contact the Chicago office (above) Breaking Ranks: A Fast to End the Siege of Iraq Contact: Breaking Ranks Fast ON SITE: Johannes Limberger 646-208-2098/ 773 447 3964 Chicago office: Daniel Muller 773-784-8065 -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq For removal from list, email email@example.com Full details of CASI's various lists can be found on the CASI website: http://www.casi.org.uk