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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 5, 2003
4:15 PM
CONTACT:  The Green Party of the United States
Nancy Allen, 207-326-4576, nallen@acadia.net
Scott McLarty, 202-518-5624, scottmclarty@yahoo.com

American Greens Welcome European Green Legislators Visiting the U.S. in a Bid to Avert the War on Iraq
 
WASHINGTON - March 5 - A delegation led by Green Members of European Parliaments brings an appeal to the U.N., to the U.S. government, and to the American people: Stop the invasion!"We welcome the delegation organized by European Greens to the United States, and we thank them for their hard efforts, organizing work, and influence in their respective legislatures in order to avert the impending invasion of Iraq," said Annie Goeke, co-chair of the International Committee of the Green Party of the United States. "Those of us in the U.S. who oppose the war need all the help we can get in trying to stop George W. Bush's war for oil and empire!"

Green Members of European Parliaments attended a reception hosted by New York Greens on Sunday, March 2. The delegation was greeted in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, March 4 by Goeke and Dean Myerson, political coordinator for the party.

The Green parliamentarians from 11 member states of the European Union traveled to New York and Washington in a last-ditch attempt to get the message to the American people that President Bush's planned war on Iraq can and must be prevented.

Bringing an anti-war appeal (appended below) signed by over 300 parliamentarians from nearly 20 countries, the European delegation visited U.N. General Secretary Kofi Annan, Chief Weapons Inspector Hans Blix, U.N. ambassadors from various countries, and members of Congress. On Monday evening, Daniel Cohn-Bendit, co-leader of the Green Party caucus in the European Parliament debated Richard Perle, a Bush Administration foreign policy advisor, in an event hosted by the Heinrich Boell Foundation.

"Article 2 of the U.N. Charter says, 'All members shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means,'" said Jo Chamberlain, a California Green and member of the national steering committee of the Green Party of the United States. "The U.N.'s mission is not to rubberstamp military aggression, but to prevent war. Greens are holding out hope that the war can be prevented."

At 9:00 a.m. Thursday morning, the European Green officials will meet with organizers of the American peace movement and anti-war demonstrations. The press conference is scheduled for 11:00 a.m. at the European Commission, 2300 M Street, N.W. Some of the visiting Greens will join the peace vigil in front of the White House, along with Green Party member Medea Benjamin of Code Pink, Women for Peace, and United for Peace and Justice.

"Another Europe is emerging that has been influenced by green values and strongly supports cooperation and peaceful resolution instead of military threats and attacks," said Starlene Rankin, California Green and Lavender Green Caucus delegate to the party's national committee. "But Europe and the rest of the world have begun to see a similar movement taking hold in the U.S. The Green Party is the political face of that movement."

The World Health Organization estimates that 100,000 Iraqi civilians may be wounded and another 400,000 hit by disease after water, sewage and food supplies are bombed, and that 3.6 million Iraqis will likely need emergency shelter. Greens, along with other opponents of the war throughout the world, argue that a 'preemptive' invasion of Iraq would constitute an international crime against humanity and a violation of the Geneva Conventions. Green Party members in the U.S. have participated in the numerous rallies, demonstrations, acts of civil disobedience, and other actions in protest of the President's war plans.

MORE INFORMATION The Green Party of the United States http://www.gp.org National office: 1314 18th Street, NW Washington, DC 20036. 202-296-7755, 866-41GREEN Green Party antiwar mobilization page http://www.greenpartyus.org/peace.html Greens/EFA in the European Parliament http://www.greens-efa.org Heinrich Boell Foundation http://www.boell.de United for Peace & Justice http://www.unitedforpeace.org

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