Solidarités, international humanitarian aid organisation, launches "a call for help for the Iraqi population"

Paris, March 19th, 2003 - The "oil for food" program which provided 16 million Iraqis with a monthly basket of food has just been interrupted, as has the supply of essential medicines. Iraq is now a closed country, completely isolated from the rest of the world.
The onset of war will automatically cause grave humanitarian consequences for the Iraqi population. We are particularly concerned by reports that weapons of mass destruction may be used in Iraq, as well as regarding population migrations to relatively inaccessible safe zones, and by the stoppage of water treatment facilities, due to power cuts, raising risks of epidemics and mortality.

Another important cause for concern are the direct consequences of war, provoking loss of life, injuries and the destruction of infrastructures which are essential to the daily lives of the Iraqi population and in particular the most vulnerable among them: young children, pregnant and breastfeeding women, the sick, the aged, the injured and the handicapped.

The international humanitarian aid organisation SOLIDARITES has decided to organise the provision of emergency humanitarian relief to the Iraqi population, as we did in 1991 and 1992 during the first Gulf War. SOLIDARITES is sending teams of experienced volunteers to the region in order to organise the first aid activities as soon as possible.

To this end, SOLIDARITES is launching a solemn appeal to our fellow citizens. Indeed, although the majority of the French population do not support war, it is now inevitable. War will strike the Iraqi population yet again, victims as they are of the embargo, previous wars, not to mention terrible repression under Saddam Hussein's regime.

It is for this reason that we are launching an emergency appeal :

1. We invite our fellow French citizens to show their generosity by sending us the necessary donations to carry out the first emergency relief programs

2. We invite the international institutions, in particular the French authorities and the European Union, to take the appropriate measures for humanitarian aid in partnership with the NGOs.

3. We invite all the countries bordering Iraq to facilitate humanitarian access to the Iraqi population, by granting us the required visas and authorisations to allow the transit of humanitarian aid.

4. We call upon the American authorities to cooperate as fully as possible with the humanitarian organisations, and to respect their principles and methods of action.

Press contact: Alain Boinet, Director, tél. : 06 82 59 29 07 / 01 43 15 13 13

To support SOLIDARITES' emergency humanitarian action in Iraq

Please send your donations to: SOLIDARITES - BP 100 - 75020 Paris, or to SOLIDARITES - Villa Souchet - 105 Avenue Gambetta - 75020 Paris.

To find out more about our action, please visit our website: