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[casi] Belgian Doctors launch worldwide appeal to end foreign occupation

[ Presenting plain-text part of multi-format email ]

Dear all,

We must continue to resist the US/UK occupation of Iraq. We're working on the complaint against 
general Tommy Franks for the war crimes committed during the aggression. Our doctors launch an 
appeal to end this criminal occupation. All medics are welcome to join this appeal.

I will send the full statement and further details later.


Dirk adriaensens

Health workers step up anti-war campaign

Worldwide appeal to end foreign occupation of Iraq launched

A group of health workers from Europe, North America, Latin America, South Asia and Southeast Asia 
vows to step up the anti-war campaign that has been mounting in the past few months. They are 
launching an international appeal of health workers that calls for an immediate end to the foreign 
occupation of Iraq for the benefit of its people's health.

The appeal's initiative committee includes Dr. Geert Van Moorter and Dr. Colette Moulaert, who were 
in Baghdad during the war for the Belgian NGO Medical Aid for the Third World (MATW), and were 
witness to the suffering caused by the U.S.-British attacks. Their statement strongly denounces the 
use of cluster bombs and depleted uranium munitions and airs the health workers' indignation about 
the disruption of health services by the attacks and subsequent occupation.

The appeal points out that health and well-being cannot be achieved under military occupation. The 
health workers therefore call for the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of all US and British 
occupation forces and the restoration of Iraq's sovereignty. They further observe that justice for 
the Iraqi people would imply that reparation payments are made and U.S. and British authorities are 
held accountable for their war crimes. In their concluding statement, the health workers urge their 
colleagues to unite in opposition to further wars of aggression because peace, based on justice, is 
a prerequisite for people's health.

Apart from Drs. Van Moorter and Moulaert, the initiative committee also includes Dr. Hillel Cohen 
from the U.S.-based International Action Center, as well as Maria Hamlin Zuniga from Nicaragua and 
Dr. Unnikrishnan PV from India who are with the International People's Health Council and the 
People's Health Movement. The other Asian members of the initiative committee are Prof. Mathura P. 
Shrestha, president of the Physicians for Social Responsibility in Nepal and Dr. Joseph Carabeo of 
the Health Alliance for Democracy in the Philippines. Dr. Bert De Belder and Dr. Wim De Ceukelaire 
of MATW are coordinating the campaign.

The initiators are inviting health workers the world over to support the appeal. Health workers can 
add their signatures on or e-mail their name, country, 
occupation, organization and position to

For reference: Dr. Wim De Ceukelaire

e-mail:; tel.: +63-2-4101395 or +63-919-4335655


International appeal of health workers:

Health and justice for the Iraqi people require an immediate end to foreign occupation

As an expression of our concern for the people's health we, medical doctors, health professionals, 
health workers and anti-war activists, actively participated in various efforts that sought to 
avert the U.S.-led war on Iraq. We warned that war would cause death and injury to the civilian 
population and destroy the health infrastructure. Now that our worst fears have become reality, we 
have every reason to intensify our principled advocacy for peace and justice.

The U.S. and Great Britain have shown their utter disrespect for International Humanitarian Law and 
human life itself. Their use of cluster bombs in civilian areas is blatantly illegal. So-called 
precision-guided weapons made many casualties among the civilian population. There are disturbing 
reports about the use of depleted uranium munitions, which might even affect the future generations.

Some of us, who stayed with the Iraqi people during the war, have witnessed how the U.S. troops 
deliberately disrupted the delivery of health care to the civilian population, shooting at 
ambulances and hindering the free passage of patients and health personnel. They allowed-if not 
incited-the looting of hospitals and medical facilities the occupying powers were legally bound to 

In the face of the enormous suffering of the Iraqi people as a result of the air raids, invasion 
and occupation, we cannot remain silent. We want to express our solidarity with our courageous and 
dedicated Iraqi colleagues, while we observe that the current humanitarian crisis is the sole 
responsibility of the U.S. and British authorities, who launched an unjust, illegitimate and 
immoral war of aggression on Iraq. Therefore, we reconfirm our commitment to people's health based 
on peace, justice and solidarity.

Health and well-being cannot be achieved under military occupation. A genuine and lasting solution 
to the humanitarian catastrophe in Iraq can only be realized after the immediate and unconditional 
withdrawal of all US and British occupation forces. Iraq's sovereignty should be restored 
immediately and entirely in order to ensure the peaceful rehabilitation of Iraq. We urge 
humanitarian organizations to take care while delivering aid, so as not to legitimize the 

Justice means that the perpetrators of crimes are held accountable. The U.S. and Great Britain 
should make reparation payments for the harm they have done to the Iraqi people and society. We 
support efforts to bring the U.S. and British civilian and military authorities to court for their 
war crimes and crimes against humanity. We volunteer our expertise and will monitor the proceedings 
to see to it that justice prevails.

For people's health to prosper, we unite for justice and against war. The insatiable greed for 
money, power and natural resources, that propelled the U.S. and Great Britain to war, will not 
disappear with Iraq's occupation. It will lead to another arms race that will deplete resources for 
health and social services, and many more imperialist wars, unless it is thwarted by a broad 
people's movement against war. Therefore, we unite to express our firm opposition to further wars 
of aggression, as we are convinced that peace, based on justice, is a prerequisite for people's 

Initiative committee: Dr. Geert Van Moorter and Dr. Colette Moulaert (Medical Aid for the Third 
World-MATW's Medical Team in Baghdad during the height of the war) Belgium-Prof. Mathura P. 
Shrestha (President, Physicians for Social Responsibility Nepal) Nepal-Dr. Hillel Cohen 
(International Action Center) US-Dr. Unnikrishnan PV (International People's Health Council-IPHC / 
People's Health Movement-PHM) India-Dr. Joseph M. Carabeo (Health Alliance for Democracy) 
Philippines-Maria Hamlin Zuniga (IPHC/PHM) Nicaragua-Dr. Bert De Belder (intal/MATW) Belgium-Dr. 
Wim De Ceukelaire (intal/MATW) Belgium

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