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Blood on their hands

Blood on their hands

Green MP and veteran peace campaigner, Sue Bradford is calling on the Government to use its vaunted influence with Washington to dissuade George W. Bush from a new war in the Middle East.

"The Prime Minister should call her 'very, very, very' close friend in Washington and tell him that this country absolutely rejects his 'war for oil' against Iraq," said Ms Bradford, who will today (Thursday, 6.30pm) address a peace rally outside the US Embassy in Wellington.

"George W. Bush has to realise that he is not the world's sheriff and that he does not have a mandate to threaten any country with the world's largest military machine.

"It's ironic that the Greens were ridiculed last year for describing George Bush as the most dangerous man in the world.

"In the last few days Time magazine asked 'Which country poses the greatest danger to world peace in 2003?' There were more than 135,000 responses to that question and 79.3 per cent of them answered: the USA.

"It is 12 years since the US and its allies achieved their stated war aim of ejecting Iraqi troops from Kuwait but for Iraq, the war and suffering have never ended.

"Independent agencies estimate that at least one and a half million Iraqis have died as a result of economic sanctions, many of them children deprived of food and medicine by the blockade. British and US warplanes raid Iraqi territory at will, ensuring the country's infrastructure is kept permanently crippled.

"New Zealand has maintained a shameful silence for the past twelve years while crimes have been committed against Iraq. This Government will have more blood on its hands if it fails to do everything to prevent a new tragedy."

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