Deprecated: Function set_magic_quotes_runtime() is deprecated in /home/antioccupation/anti-occupation.org/textpattern/lib/txplib_db.php on line 14

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/antioccupation/anti-occupation.org/textpattern/lib/txplib_db.php:14) in /home/antioccupation/anti-occupation.org/textpattern/lib/txplib_misc.php on line 1623

Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/antioccupation/anti-occupation.org/textpattern/lib/txplib_db.php:14) in /home/antioccupation/anti-occupation.org/textpattern/publish.php on line 477
International Anti Occupation Network: Iraqi International Initiative on Refugees

International Anti Occupation Network

Iraqi Oil Revenues for Iraqi Refugees posted by Iraqi International Initiative on Refugees

More than 4.5 million Iraqis — a fifth of the population — have been displaced inside and outside their country due to the sectarian policies of the occupation and the governments it has installed since the illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003

The international community, the occupation powers, and the government in Iraq are legally required to support and protect Iraqi refugees

Iraqi refugees are Iraqi citizens who have a full right to live in dignity, a right to benefit equally from national resources, and a right to return to their homes

The UN Security Council, as the highest body of the UN, has the power and legal duty to ensure that the needs of Iraqi refugees are met by passing a resolution to require that the Iraqi state allocate proportionate revenue to responsible agencies and hosting countries

Following 13 years of UN imposed disastrous sanctions that qualified as genocide1, with the complicity of the UN Security Council (UNSC) — its failure to act to protect the people and State of Iraq2, or fulfill its own obligations3 — the US illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq4 has resulted in a humanitarian catastrophe unequalled since World War II5.

In addition to having caused the violent deaths of more than one million Iraqis6, 2.3 million Iraqis have been displaced within their own country while over two million more are scattered mainly in neighboring states7. The Iraqi Red Crescent Society reports that in October 2007 alone 368,479 Iraqis were uprooted from their homes inside Iraq8, while an estimated 60,000 Iraqis flee the country to neighboring states on a monthly basis9.

The modern Iraqi educated middle class, whose role is needed — now and in the future — to run the state, the economy, and build Iraqi culture, has been decimated. Following systematic assassinations10, imprisonment11, military raids and sieges12, threats and discrimination13, most of what remains of that class has left the country14. The absence of this middle class has resulted in the breakdown of all public services for the entirety of Iraqi society.

All information coming from Iraq shows that fear for life imposed on Iraqis is the cause of the displacement of millions inside and outside their country. Displaced Iraqis are refugees by definition and according to international law [15]. The 1951 UN Refugee Convention and its 1967 additional protocol stipulate that a refugee is any person “who owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion, is outside the country of their nationality, and is unable to or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail him/herself of the protection of that country.”16

Iraqi refugees have the right to life and dignity17

The US-led occupation and the governments it has installed are legally duty-bound under international humanitarian law — by the Fourth Geneva Convention and its additional protocols — and by UNSC Resolutions 1265, 1296 and 1674 to protect civilian lives in Iraq and provide for basic needs18. Instead, the occupation and the governments it instituted are imposing a state of terror by resorting to disproportionate and indiscriminate use of force19 and by implementing such sectarian policies as sponsoring sectarian militias that perpetrate ethnic cleansing20. They remain unable or unwilling to provide even the most basic services, including adequate access to water and electricity21. These policies are forcing millions to live in poverty and/or flee for their lives.

Neither the occupation and the governments it has installed, nor individual states and the international community22 have met their legal and moral obligations towards displaced Iraqis or the countries hosting them23. While the living conditions of Iraqis are deteriorating, they become a social, financial and economic burden on the host countries, several of which already have large refugee populations24.

Iraqi refugees have a right to security, recognized passports and residence visas, food, shelter, health and education. Host countries cannot afford to place the large number of Iraqi refugee youth into schools and higher education. If no urgent measures are taken to find a solution for this problem, then a generation of Iraqis will lose their universal right of access to education25. This is not only harmful to Iraqi refugees, but also to the future of Iraq. It is urgent that pupils and students have access to schools. Aiding host countries to meet the needs of Iraqi refugees would also result in enhancing and mobilizing the rich potential the refugees have.

A solution is needed urgently. The real answer is the end of the causes of violence in Iraq, to allow Iraqi refugees to return safely to their homes. However, although protecting civilians from violence, according to international humanitarian law, is the responsibility of the occupation and the governments it has installed26, there are no signs that they are fulfilling this duty. Daily, violence on civilians spreads to new regions. The fact that an exodus is taking place is proof that the government in Iraq, supported by the occupation, does not protect the population.

The UNSC should pass a resolution, now

The UNSC has the legal and political power to pass a resolution demanding that the Iraqi state allocate part of the revenue from Iraqi oil — in proportion with the number of Iraqi citizens temporarily displaced — for Iraqi refugees in hosting countries [27]. No legal objection can be raised against such an action. Iraqi refugees are Iraqi citizens28. They have a right to benefit from national resources29 and to claim the necessities of protection and support from the Iraqi state. Their right of return is guaranteed30.

A precedent in jurisprudence for such an action exists concerning Iraq, with UNSC Resolution 986 of 199531. This resolution, too, was passed on humanitarian grounds. It required the Iraqi state to provide part of Iraqi revenues to the UN Inter-Agency Humanitarian Program in order “to ensure equitable distribution of humanitarian relief to all segments of Iraqi society”, including to Iraqi citizens who were residing in the three Northern governorates, which were not administratively supervised by the central government32. Current Iraqi refugees are in the same situation of being outside the supervision of the central government governing Iraq.

The responsibility of states towards refugees is established in international law33. Obliging the Iraqi state, by way of a UNSC resolution, to allocate proportionate revenue to displaced Iraqi citizens is the only efficient way for the country of origin and the international community to fulfill their obligations towards both Iraqi refugees and hosting countries while preserving the rights of refugees and their dignity as Iraqi citizens. UN relief agencies, hosting country institutions, non-governmental organizations and Iraqi refugee representatives could monitor the distribution of the allocated revenue.

Call for action

Displaced and refugee Iraqis cannot wait until they can return home for their essential needs to be met. The international community has the moral obligation to act now. UNSC Resolution 986 of 1995 established that Iraqi oil revenue is for all Iraqis. As Iraqi citizens, Iraqi refugees have equal rights to share in the wealth of Iraq.

We call upon all governments, UN agencies and organizations, law, human rights and humanitarian associations, and all people of conscience to work together towards ensuring that the UNSC adopt and implement this proposal of obliging the Iraqi state to allocate oil revenues for Iraqi refugees.

We demand that states — particularly those involved in the illegal invasion and destruction of Iraq — fulfill their obligations and responsibilities and provide necessary funding for the UN High Commissioner on Refugees (UNHCR) mission of protecting displaced Iraqis34.

We call upon all to raise funds and take all measures to provide direct aid to Iraqi refugees and the organizations helping them.

Humanity is in distress in Iraq. Our moral responsibility is to save it. Join us.

First Signatories

Hans von Sponeck, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (1998-2000), Germany.
Denis Halliday, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (1997-1998), Ireland.
Ms. Niloufer Bhagwat, Advocate, Vice President of the Indian Association of Lawyers.
Mathias Chang, 37 years in the antiwar movement, Malaysia.
Sabah Al-Mukhtar, President Arab Lawyers Association, UK.
Issam Al-Chalabi, Former Iraqi Oil Minister, Iraq-Jordan.
Saeed .H. Hassan, Former Iraqi Permanent Representative to the UN, Iraq -Egypt.
Dr Curtis F J Doebbler, Professor of law, at Najah National University, Nablus, Palestine.
Dirk Adriaensens, Member Executive Committee BRussells Tribunal, Belgium.
Dahr Jamail, Independent Journalist, Author of “Beyond the Green Zone: Dispatches from an Unembedded Journalist in Occupied Iraq”, USA.
Paola Manduca, Geneticist and Antiwar Activist, New Weapons, Italy.
Bert De Belder, M.D., Coordinator, Medical Aid for the Third World, Belgium.
Mohammed Aref, Science Writer, Advisor for ‘Arab Science&Technology Foundation’, UAE.
Abdul Ilah Albayaty, Writer, Iraqi Political Analyst, Iraq-France.
Dr Ian Douglas, Writer, Egypt.
Hana Al Bayaty, Iraqi International Initiative Coordinator, France-Iraq / Egypt.

1 See Indictment, Complaint and Petition on behalf of 4.5 million Iraqi Children , by Professor Francis Boyle, September 1991; World Heath Organization report on annual mortality rates and excess deaths of children under five in Iraq, 1991-98; and A Different Kind of War: The UN Sanctions Regime in Iraq, (Berghahn Books: New York, September 2006) by Hans C Von Sponeck, former UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq who resigned in protest in February 2000. Sponeck’s predecessor, Denis Halliday, resigned in October 1998 after a 34-year UN career saying “I don’t want to administer a program that satisfies the definition of genocide.” See also US Genocide in Iraq by Dr Ian Douglas with Abdul Ilah Albayaty and Hana Al Bayaty, published by The BRussells Tribunal, June 2007.

2 The UNSC — in particular the veto-wielding permanent members — failed to prevent the US/UK illegal war of aggression on Iraq and to censure UN member states that participated in that war of aggression. In failing to prevent this violation of international law, or appeal against the war of aggression, the UNSC violated the UN Charter. On 8 June 2004, the UNSC compounded this abnegation of its responsibilities, further failing the people of Iraq, by adopting UNSC Resolution 1546 in which it appealed to member states to assist an illegal and sectarian US-imposed Iraqi government that daily violates human rights. Article 41(2) of the International Law Commission’s Draft Articles on State Responsibility, representing customary international law and adopted in UN General Assembly Resolution 56/83 of 28 January 2002 (“Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts”), prevents states from benefiting from their own illegal acts: “No state shall recognize as lawful a situation created by a serious breach [of an obligation arising under a peremptory norm of general international law]” (emphasis added). See also Section III, UN General Assembly Resolution 36/103 of 14 December 1962, “Declaration on the Inadmissibility of Intervention and Interference in the Internal Affairs of States”. The UNSC also failed in its duty to protect by remaining silent as Order #1 of US civil administrator Paul Bremer, overseeing the “de-Baathification” of Iraqi society, flagrantly breached protected human rights; while the destruction of Fallujah by coalition forces in November 2004 constituted collective punishment, war crimes and crimes against humanity; and while the US-established Iraqi Special Tribunal flagrantly breached the laws of war and the 1949 Third Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War leading to summary executions after unfair trails.

3 The obligations of the UNSC are defined by chapters I and V of the UN Charter

4 The 1950 Nuremberg Principles list “crimes against peace” as first among crimes imputable under international law, defined as: “(i) Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances; (ii) Participation of a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned under (i).” On 16 September 2004, then UN Secretary General Kofi Annan told the BBC that the US-led invasion of Iraq was an illegal act that contravened the UN Charter. See also US illegality in Iraq: Where is the Limit?, The BRussells Tribunal, March 2006, and Only Resistance is Legal, published by The BRussells Tribunal, October 2006.

5 The UNHCR in an appeal of 8 January 2007 noted that the current Iraqi exodus is the largest long-term population movement in the region since the displacement of Palestinians following the creation of the State of Israel in 1948.

6 In addition to the cluster-sample estimate made by The Lancet medical journal, which put the number of Iraqis who died from violent deaths as of July 2006 at a minimum of 655,000, the data of a poll conducted in Iraq by Opinion Business Research released in September 2007 suggests a total of 1,220,580 deaths since the invasion in 2003.

7 UNHCR report Statistics on displaced Iraqis around the world, September 2007.

8 AFP release of 5 November 2007.

9 UNHCR report Statistics on displaced Iraqis around the world, September 2007. This report includes numbers of Iraqis displaced under the UN-administered sanctions regime, as well as internally displaced peoples and externally displaced peoples since the 2003 illegal invasion of Iraq.

10 See List of assassinated Iraqi academics, compiled and published by The BRussells Tribunal; List of assassinated Iraqi media professionals, compiled and published by The BRussells Tribunal; Four years into the occupation: No health for Iraq, report by Dr Bert de Belder, published by The BRussells Tribunal, 21 March 2007; List of assassinated Imams and mosques workers, compiled and published by The BRussells Tribunal; and Iraqi killing fields, BRussells Tribunal. See also the UN IRIN News Agency report on threats against lawyers. In April 2006 IRIN News reported more than 300,000 widows in Baghdad alone, with 90 newly widowed daily countrywide. While addressing Rotarians in a speech broadcast by C-SPAN 5 September 2007, Samir Sumaidaie, Iraqi Ambassador to the US, stated that there were 500,000 new widows in Iraq.

11 See Global Policy’s Torture and Prison Abuse in Iraq and Amnesty International’s 2007 report on Iraq.

12 See Global Policy’s War and Occupation in Iraq report, chapter 6, Attacks on Cities, revised in June 2007. Most Iraqi cities are under siege, with Baghdad divided into walled-in communities. Among other “gated communities” are Tel Afar, Fallujah, Al Qaim, Samarra, Yathreb, Haditha, Hit and Khalidiyah. See Their Next Massacre and This Wall is their Grave, published by The BRussells Tribunal, respectively on 28 November 2006 and 25 April 2007.

13 See UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, Human Rights Report, 1 April – 30 June 2007.

14 The UNHCR in an appeal of 8 January 2007 noted that 40 per cent of the Iraqi middle class has fled the country.

15 See Resolution on the Humanitarian Situation of Iraqi Refugees of the European Parliament, 12 July 2007.

16 Article 1 of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

17 See articles 1, 3, 22 and 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted and proclaimed by UN General Assembly Resolution 217 A (III), 10 December 1948.

18 See article 111 of the Fourth Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War on occupied territories.

19 See Global Policy’s October 2006 War and Occupation in Iraq report chapter 3, Indiscriminate and Especially Injurious Weapons chapter 6, Attacks on Cities chapter 7, Killing Civilians, Murder and Atrocities and; War Crimes Committed by the United States in Iraq and Mechanisms for Accountability, October 2006.

20 All the sectarian groups participating in the US-supported Iraqi government have their own militias, many of which were integrated into the so-called Iraqi security forces. US security contractors, the Iraqi police, army, and ministry guards have participated with the US army in persecuting their opponents. Financing come directly or indirectly with the complicity of the government.

21 Oxfam and NCCI report, Rising to the Humanitarian Challenge in Iraq, July 2007. The report states that the number of Iraqis without adequate supplies of water has risen from 50 per cent to 70 per cent since 2003, and that most homes in Baghdad and other cities receive only two hours of electricity per day.

22 By “international community” we include governments, international organisations and associations, and civil society actors.

23 See the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. An overview of definition and obligations can be found here. See also General Assembly Resolutions relating to refugees and the UNHCR.

24 See UNHCR release Syria and Jordan still wait for help despite pledges made at Iraq meeting, UNHCR Briefing Notes, 6 July 2007, Iraq displacement: Generous host countries left in the lurch, and IRIN News, 6 July 2007, and Aid agencies struggle to support over two million displaced Iraqis, 11 November 2007.

25 See article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

26 See articles 54 and 64 of the Fourth Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in the Time of War.

27 See chapter 5, article 25, of the UN Charter.

28 See section Schedule, paragraph 15 of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

29 See UN General Assembly Resolution 1803 (XVII), 14 December 1962, “Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources”.

30 See the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, also reiterated by UN General Assembly Resolutions of 21 December 1995, 12 December 1996, 12 December 1997 and 18 December 2002. See Responsibility for Refugees (pdf).

31 See UNSC Resolution 986, 14 April 1995.

32 In 1991, Turkey shut its borders to the flow of refugees coming mainly from Northern Iraq, refusing to apply the jus cogens principle of “non-refoulement” (prohibition on the expulsion of refugees to an area where they may face persecution). As a consequence, the UNSC, realizing this principle wasn’t sufficient to protect the refugee population, passed resolution 688, adding political solutions into the equation of refugee protection. Resolution 688 required the State of Iraq to allow the UNHCR to work inside its territory and set up a “security zone” in Northern Iraq. This decision began a new practice in refugee law protection. In 1995, Resolution 986 allocated part of national Iraqi resources to the population not under the authority of the Iraqi government (3 northern governorates). Resolution 1314 and 1325 further emphasized the tendency in international jurisprudence on the protection of refugee populations to insist on the responsibility of states to assist civilians, including refugees and the displaced. These resolutions created a legal precedent that obliges and allows the UNSC to draft a resolution requiring the allocation of a proportionate part of Iraqi oil revenues to current Iraqi refugees, so as to protect their human rights and in the knowledge that Iraqi oil is the property of all Iraqis, inside or outside Iraq. This tendency is reflected by UNHCR appeals and the final declaration (pdf) of the World Summit in 2005.

33 See the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

34 The government of Iraq has allocated only $25 million for Iraqi refugees while its national revenues amount to billions of dollars.

Oil for Iraqi citizens posted by Iraqi International Initiative on Refugees

Precedent exists in international law that could explode the US occupation of Iraq, its genocidal strategy, and be a step towards healing the wounds of the Iraqi nation, writes Hana Al-Bayaty*

Some 4.7 million Iraqi citizens — one fifth of the population — have been forcibly displaced, within and outside their country, by the US occupation and the policies of the sectarian governments it installed since the illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003. It is a human catastrophe, a national tragedy, and a destabilising factor for the region. This exodus has been labelled “the fastest growing humanitarian crisis on the planet”, unprecedented in size since the 1948 Nakba that uprooted at least one million Palestinians from their land.

While propaganda boasts about some 25,000 returnees, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the primary international agency responsible for refugees, warned last month that conditions for the safe return of Iraqis were not met on the ground and that the few who returned in November 2007 did not do so — contrary to what the so-called government in Iraq pretends — because of security improvements in Iraq, but rather because their means of survival are deteriorating gravely elsewhere. Among the main reasons leading some to return are harsh new restrictions on residency permits in hosting countries, denials of access to schooling and higher education for their children, and the depletion of emergency savings. Many returnees found that others were occupying their homes in Iraq, forcing them to look yet again for shelter. The government in Iraq finally acknowledged that it could not sustain massive return were it to take place.

The 4.7 million Iraqi refugees who fled for their lives, uprooted from their homes by the disproportionate force used by the occupation and campaigns of ethnic cleansing carried out by militias affiliated to its sectarian governments, are living testimony to the inhuman — and anti- human rights — American invasion and occupation of Iraq. At least 1.5 million Iraqis have been brutally murdered, thousands disappeared or detained, hundreds of thousands widowed. The modern Iraqi educated middle class, vital now and in the future to run the state, the economy, and build Iraqi culture, has been decimated. Following systematic assassinations, imprisonment, military raids and sieges, threats and discrimination, most of what remained of that class left the country. The absence of this middle class has resulted in the breakdown of all public services for the entirety of Iraqi society. No propaganda can call the occupation a success while so many people are suffering its consequences.

Of the 4.7 million displaced, four fifths are women and children. All have inadequate or non- existent access to security, food, shelter, education, sanitation, health, and basic necessities such as water and electricity. In addition to the brain drain that Iraq suffered since the start of the occupation, whether through systematic killings or displacement, refugee children are currently losing their universal right to education in being unable to attend schools. It is an individual tragedy for refugees and a disaster for the future of Iraq. UNHCR is dramatically under-financed to meet the needs of these millions displaced. It has made repeated pleas for enhanced international donations to support its basic functioning and the fulfilment of its humanitarian mission.

While Iraqi refugees cannot safely return home, they cannot wait until violence ends in Iraq for their needs to be met. The key hosting countries bearing the millions of displaced Iraqis are home already to large refugee populations and are developing economies. With their own citizens suffering unemployment, Iraqi refugees are denied work permits and permanent residency. In addition, these key hosting states are not signatories to the 1951 UN Refugee Convention, and therefore not bound by its principles — even in instances denying the customary international legal obligation of non-refoulement (prohibition on the expulsion of refugees to an area where they may face persecution). As a consequence, Iraqis are denied status, considered tourists with no recognised passport or residence, and left economically and socially vulnerable. All indicators of social desperation are present while reports of increasing resort to degrading means of survival keep arising.

According to international humanitarian and human rights law, the international community, the occupying powers, and the government in Iraq are legally bound to support and protect Iraqi refugees. Neither the occupation with the governments it has installed nor individual states and the international community have met their legal and moral obligations towards displaced Iraqis or the countries hosting them. Iraqi refugees are temporarily displaced Iraqi citizens who have a full right to live in dignity, the right to benefit from national resources, and the right to return to their homes. They are protected persons under The Hague Regulations and the Geneva Conventions, as well as several instruments of international law that relate to refugees.

IRAQI INTERNATIONAL INITIATIVE ON REFUGEES: On 25 November 2007, the Iraqi International Initiative on refugees ( www.3iii.org ) issued a proposal to support, protect and defend refugees and their rights as Iraqi citizens by changing the financing system of responsible agencies and hosting countries. The proposal asks the UN Security Council to pass a resolution requiring that the Iraqi state allocate part of the revenue from Iraqi oil — in proportion with the number of Iraqi citizens temporarily displaced — for Iraqi refugees in hosting countries.

Such a resolution is urgently needed, legally justified and politically appropriate. It is the only efficient way for the country of origin and the international community to fulfil their legal and moral obligations towards both Iraqi refugees and hosting countries while preserving the rights of refugees and their dignity as Iraqi citizens. Further, such a resolution is not only justified but respecting of existing jurisprudence on state responsibility and refugee protection, while in accordance with the primary mission of the UN to preserve international peace and security, protect civilian populations and enhance human civilisation. No legal objection can be raised against this proposal. Moreover, an example of redistributing national resources equitably by means of a UN Security Council resolution exists in the case of Iraq.

In 1991, Turkey shut its borders to the flow of refugees coming mainly from northern Iraq, refusing to apply the principle of non- refoulement. As a consequence, the UN Security Council, realising this principle wasn’t sufficient to protect the refugee population, instituted new practices in refugee protection. Article 8b of UN Security Council Resolution 986 of 1995 obliged the Iraqi state to allocate part of Iraqi national resources to the population not under the authority of the Iraqi government (the three northern governorates). This resolution was passed on humanitarian grounds, in order “to ensure equitable distribution of humanitarian relief to all segments of Iraqi society”, including to Iraqi citizens who were residing in the three northern governorates that were not administratively supervised by the central government. Current Iraqi refugees are in the same situation of being outside the supervision of the central government governing Iraq.

UN Security Council resolutions 1314 and 1325 further emphasised the tendency in international jurisprudence on the protection of refugee populations to insist on the responsibility of states to assist civilians, including refugees and the displaced. This tendency is further reflected in UNHCR appeals and the final declaration of the World Summit in 2005. Resolutions 986, 1314 and 1325 created a legal precedent that obliges and allows the UNSC to draft and pass a resolution now requiring the allocation of a proportionate part of Iraqi oil revenues to current Iraqi refugees, so as to protect their human rights and in the knowledge that Iraqi oil is the property of all Iraqis, inside or outside Iraq, as established by UNSC Resolution 986.

UNDERCUTTING THE LOGIC OF VIOLENCE: As well as establishing the duty to protect, international jurisprudence on refugees often places emphasis on helping the country of origin to eradicate the causes of violence that displaces the population. The proposal of the Iraqi International Initiative on refugees adheres to this logic too. US policy towards Iraq, since 1991, has been to destroy its political, military and economic capacities in an attempt to divide it into three or more entities in order to seize its natural resources. The ethnic cleansing currently taking place under the orchestration of the US occupation is intrinsically linked to the latter’s attempt to control Iraq’s resources by promoting and manipulating sectarian identities.

From the first day of the occupation the US supported sectarian forces, themselves sufficiently weak, illegitimate and conflicted that they are unable to create a functioning state, therefore requiring the never-ending help, presence, protection and direction of the US itself. The so- called political process in which these forces participate is only tolerated so long as it oversees and ensures the dismantlement of the unified and sovereign Iraqi state, its institutions and infrastructure; dismembers Iraqi society and its social fabric along sectarian and confessional lines; and helps the occupation in repressing the national popular resistance of the Iraqi people. This strategy was pursued throughout the occupation as a means to destroy Iraq both as a state and as a nation, to subjugate its people into surrendering their national resources to US corporations and interests.

Yet despite 15 years of continuous attempts to subjugate Iraq and its people, whether through economic sanctions, war of aggression or occupation, US policy failed. By 2006, the occupation opted to delegate to the various sectarian forces and militias it had promoted the task of forcibly uprooting the local resilient population, thereafter seizing their resources. The political process and the ethnic cleansing it perpetrates is but an instrumentalised power struggle among various sectarian factions competing for the political and/or economic rewards granted by the occupation for depriving the Iraqi people of their sovereignty by displacing them and achieving local control over areas and attendant resources.

Whole areas have been purged of resident minorities by one militia or another, effectively changing the demographic make-up of entire regions and neighbourhoods, especially in Baghdad, while keeping one of the collaborating militia in control in any given locale, over the people and its resources. Though sectarianism starts with attacking minorities and the weak, it soon spreads to all components of society, as each can be, somewhere, a majority or a minority. The occupation itself changes its affiliations as it doesn’t need to consider itself permanently bound to the respective agendas of each faction and defends only its own interest. This criminal strategy ensures a never-ending cycle of violence that can only be stopped by the end of its root cause: the US occupation. By now, all Iraqis have been affected — all sections of Iraqi society have been forced to flee.

While the occupation uses forcible displacement as a means of blackmail to, alternately, terrorise the population, destabilise hosting countries and plunder Iraq’s wealth, a UNSC resolution requiring the Iraqi state allocate the proportionate and legitimate share of Iraqi national wealth to Iraqi refugees would effectively deny the occupation its goals and deprive its sectarian forces of the benefits of displacing the population for economic or political gains. It would render the entire tactic of forcible displacement obsolete, as its victims would be guaranteed their share of national revenue by law as well as right.

THE OBLIGATION TO ACT: The UN Security Council, as the highest UN body, has the political, legal and moral duty and authority to act to protect the millions of displaced Iraqis. Following 13 years of disastrous UN-imposed sanctions that according to two former UN assistant secretary-generals satisfied the definition of genocide under international law, the UN Security Council failed to act to protect the state and people of Iraq, or condemn and censure those responsible for launching an illegal war of aggression against a member state of the United Nations. Its silence on the horrendous human and material cost paid by Iraqis since the illegal 2003 US invasion is not only shameful but also criminal.

A UNSC resolution on Iraqi refugees would end the complicity of the UN in this crime, expose the occupation’s illegality and hypocrisy, as well as the barbaric and inhuman nature of the policies the US has been pursuing in Iraq since its illegal invasion in 2003. If we are to re- establish a peaceful international order, US imperialism must be constrained. It promotes sectarianism everywhere. It then uses the plight of those made refugees by sectarian violence as a political tool to blackmail and destabilise both countries of origin and hosting countries. Finally, it uses refugees as a justification for “humanitarian” intervention, regardless of state sovereignty, while obscuring the massive humanitarian crises it generates by its own sectarian policies.

As shown by UNHCR figures, most displaced Iraqis refuse to be treated as refugees. They consider being granted status and resettled a de facto victory for the occupation and its policies of pushing the population out of Iraq and depriving it of its national rights. All Iraqis know the occupation’s plans have failed completely and cannot be recovered. As Iraqi citizens, they know they are sovereign over the resources of Iraq, now and in the future. Further, they are conscious collectively of the dramatic situation of their Palestinian sisters and brothers who, despite having been guaranteed the unalienable right of return by UN Resolution 194, have been denied return for nearly 60 years. While their right is being bargained by some and used as political blackmail by others, they are forced to live in camps and from international charity. Iraqis refuse to lose their rights in Iraq, or accept the humiliation of having to beg while they are sovereign over one of the most resource-rich countries in the world. They hope Iraq will be liberated soon, allowing them to return home safely.

Finally, a UNSC resolution as described would protect and defend the Iraqi people’s rights while defending universal human values. It would enhance the permanent sovereignty of the Iraqi people over their national resources, thereby derailing the primary goals of aggressive imperialist states of forcing smaller states’ economies, their population and resources, into submission by military means. This would be a victory for humanity worldwide while upholding the endangered superiority of law and the duty to protect human life above private or exclusive state, corporate and individual interests.

While protecting the sovereign rights of Iraq and its people, now and in the future, a UNSC resolution as described would condemn the feudal plague of sectarianism, binding the future and destiny of Iraqi citizens together as members of the same state and nation, benefiting equally from the distribution of its national resources. Unfortunately for the occupation, while there are religious and cultural differences among Iraqi refugees, all are Iraqi citizens with protected rights, and all are bound to each other by the past, present and future of their nation as well as their common situation and destiny. By considering and treating all as equal citizens of a unified state free from all forms of discrimination, whether ethnic, confessional or of gender, a UNSC resolution as described would pave the way for a sane basis for healing Iraq’s wounds as a nation, also upholding the concept of citizenship — the basis of any modern state — against the occupation’s current tribal, sectarian and feudal concept of identity. It would be a preventive action against the politics of divide and rule and the use of ethnic cleansing as a political instrument to control the common riches of a people.

The UNSC should draft and pass a resolution as described if it wants to rehabilitate itself from its consistent failure to uphold its own legal charter, protect the people of Iraq and state of Iraq, as well as international peace and stability. Such a resolution defends the principle of equality before law, the permanent sovereignty of people over their national resources, and the unalienable right of refugees to return to their homes, thereby giving the UNSC opportunity to break away from its perpetual double standards in the implementation of international justice.

Iraqis have paid a price that leaves one wordless in defending human life and values. Humanity should feel responsible for protecting these people in their heroic struggle for national liberation and take immediate steps to defend their rights and their sovereignty.

The writer is coordinator of the Iraqi International Initiative on refugees (www.3iii.org).

عائدات النفط العراقية من أجل اللاجئين العراقيين posted by Iraqi International Initiative on Refugees

تعرض أكثر من أربعة ملايين ونصف المليون عراقي ، أي خمس سكان العراق ، للنزوح داخل بلادهم وخارجها نظرا للسياسات الطائفية التي يمارسها الاحتلال والحكومات التي أنشأها منذ الغزو غير الشرعي للعراق عام 2003.

المجتمع الدولي، والقوة القائمة بالإحتلال، والحكومة العراقية جميعا مطالبون قانونا بتقديم الدعم والحماية للاجئين العراقيين.

إن اللاجئين العراقيين هم مواطنون عراقيون لهم كامل الحق في أن يعيشوا بكرامة، ولهم الحق في أن يستفيدوا مثل غيرهم من المواطنين من الموارد التي تتمتع بها بلادهم على حد سواء، ولهم الحق كذلك في العودة إلى مساكنهم.

إن مجلس الأمن الدولي، وهو أعلى هيئات الأمم المتحدة، له من القدرة وعليه من المسؤولية القانونية ما يجعله ملزما بالسعي لضمان توفير احتياجات اللاجئين العراقيين وذلك من خلال إصدار قرار يطالب الدولة في العراق بتخصيص نسبة من العائدات تساوي نسبة اللاجئين من السكان تؤول إلى الوكالات المسؤولة عن اللاجئين وإلى الدول المضيفة لهم.

بعد مرور ثلاثة عشر عاما من فرض العقوبات الكارثية التي صنّفت كونها عملية إبادة جماعية1،بتواطؤ من مجلس الأمن الدولي الذي تقاعس عن حماية العراق دولة وشعبا2، أو الوفاء بما عليه من التزامات3، أدى الغزو الأمريكي غير الشرعي للعراق4 إلى كارثة إنسانية لم يسبق لها مثيل منذ الحرب العالمية الثانية5.

فبالإضافة إلى تسببه في موت أكثر من مليون عراقي جراء تعرضهم للعنف6، فقد تعرض مليونان وثلاثمائة ألف عراقي للنزوح داخل بلادهم في حين تشتت أكثر من مليوني عراقي آخرين في الدول المجاورة7.وحسب ما ذكرته جمعية الهلال الأحمر العراقية ففي شهر تشرين الأول / أكتوبر من عام 2007 وحده تعرض ثلاثمائة وثمانية وستون ألفا وأربعمائة وتسعة وسبعون (368.479) عراقيا للطرد من ديارهم داخل العراق8، في حين يفر ما يقدر بحوالي ستين ألف عراقي شهريا خارج البلاد إلى الدول المجاورة9.

الطبقة الوسطى المثقفة والعصرية في العراق ، الذين يحتاجهم العراق ، الآن وفي المستقبل، لإدارة الدولة والإقتصاد وبناء الثقافة العراقية ، فقد جرى تدميرها . وإثر عمليات الاغتيال المنظم10، والسجن11، والمداهمات والحصارات العسكرية12،والتهديدات والتمييز ضدها13، فإن معظم ما تبقى من تلك الطبقة قد غادر البلاد14.وقد أدى غياب هذه الطبقة المتوسطة إلى إنهيار جميع الخدمات العامة لمجمل المجتمع العراقي.

وتظهر كل المعلومات التي تأتي من العراق أن خوف الناس على حياتهم هو السبب في هجرة الملايين داخل البلاد وخارجها. فالعراقيون المهجّرون ينطبق عليهم وصف اللاجئين بمعنى الكلمة وطبقا للقانون الدولي15. فمعاهدة الأمم المتحدة للاجئين لعام 1951 وبروتوكولها الإضافي لعام 1967 تنص على أن اللاجئ هو أي شخص “يعيش خارج بلاده نظرا للخوف من الاضطهاد لأسباب عرقية، أو دينية، أو قومية، أو لكونه عضوا في مجموعة اجتماعية معينة، أو بسبب آراءه السياسية، وهو غير قادر على تقديم نفسه للتمتع بحماية تلك الدولة أو غير راغب في ذلك بسبب هذا الخوف16“.

للاجئين العراقيين الحق في الحياة والكرامة17

إن الاحتلال الذي تقوده الولايات المتحدة والحكومات التي نصّبها الإحتلال في العراق ملزمون قانونا بموجب القانون الدولي الإنساني ، بموجب معاهدة جنيف الرابعة وبروتوكولاتها الإضافية وبموجب قرارات مجلس الأمن 1265، و 1296 و 1674 بحماية حياة المدنيين في العراق وتوفير حاجاتهم الأساسية18. إلا أنه وبدلا من ذلك، فإن الاحتلال ومعه الحكومات التي أنشاها يفرضون حالة من الإرهاب من خلال اللجوء إلى الاستخدام المفرط والعشوائي للقوة19 ومن خلال تنفيذ سياسات طائفية تشجع الميليشيات الطائفية التي ترتكب عمليات التطهير العرقي20، وهم لا يزالون غير قادرين اوغيرراغبين في تقديم حتى الخدمات الأكثر أساسية التي يحتاجها السكان بما في ذلك الحصول على ما يكفي من الماء والكهرباء21.هذه السياسات أجبرت الملايين على العيش في فقر و/أو الفرار للنجاة بأرواحهم.

ولم ينفذ الاحتلال ولا الحكومات التي أنشأها، ولا الدول منفردة ولا المجتمع الدولي22ما عليهم من التزامات قانونية وأخلاقية تجاه المهجرين العراقيين أو تجاه الدول التي استضافتهم23 ومع تتدهور الظروف المعيشية للمهجرين لعراقيين، فإنهم أصبحوا يمثلون عبئا اجتماعيا وماليا واقتصاديا على الدول المضيفة التي كثير منها هي أصلا بلد مستضيفا للاجئين آخرين24.

للاجئين العراقيين الحق في التمتع بالأمن والحصول على جوازات السفر المعترف بها وتأشيرات الإقامة والطعام والمسكن والصحة والتعليم ، وليس في مقدرة الدول المضيفة قبول عدد كبير من اللاجئين العراقيين الشباب في المدارس والجامعات. وإذا لم تتخذ إجراءات عاجلة لإيجاد حل لهذه المشكلة، فإن جيلا من العراقيين سيفقدون حقهم الانساني في الحصول على التعليم25.وهذا لا يضر باللاجئين العراقيين فحسب، ولكنه يؤثر كذلك على مستقبل العراق. إنه لأمر عاجل أن يواصل التلاميذ والطلاب تعليمهم . إن مساعدة الدول المضيفة لكي تفي باحتياجات اللاجئين العراقيين سيؤدي إلى تفعيل القدرات الكامنة عند اللاجئين وتطويرها.

يجب إيجاد حل عاجل لهذه المسألة ، والحل الحقيقي الناجح يكمن في إزالة الأسباب التي تؤدي إلى العنف في العراق وبما يسمح للاجئين العراقيين بالعودة إلى مساكنهم في أمان. ورغم أن حماية المدنيين من العنف، طبقا للقانون الدولي الإنساني هي مسؤولية الاحتلال والحكومات التي أنشأها26، إلا أنه لا توجد مؤشرات على أنهم يقومون بواجبهم في أداء هذه المهمة ، ليس هذا فحسب ، بل وتتوسع ممارسة العنف يوميا ضد المدنيين الى مناطق جديدة. وفي الواقع فإن الهجرة الجماعية التي تحدث هي دليل على أن الحكومة في العراق، وبدعم من الاحتلال، لا تحمي السكان.

ينبغي على مجلس الأمن أن يصدر قرارا، الآن

إن لدى مجلس الأمن السلطة القانونية والسياسية لكي يصدر قرارا يطلب من الدولة العراقية أن تخصص جزءا من عائدات النفط العراقي ، بما يتناسب مع عدد المواطنين العراقيين النازحين مؤقتا ، للعراقيين اللاجئين في الدول المضيفة27. لا يمكن إثارة إعتراض قانوني على هذا الإجراء . اللاجئون العراقيون هم مواطنون عراقيون28 ولهم الحق في الاستفادة من مصادر الثروة الوطنية29 والتمتع بالحماية والدعم من الدولة العراقية ، وأن يضمن حقهم في العودة الى مساكنهم30.

وتوجد سابقة قانونية لمثل ذلك الإجراء تتعلق بالعراق، وتتمثل في قرار مجلس الأمن رقم 986 لعام311995. فقد صدر هذا القرار أيضا لاعتبارات إنسانية؛ وطلب من الدولة العراقية بأن تقدم جزءا ً من عائدات النفط العراقي إلى برنامج وكالات الأمم المتحدة الإنساني لكي “تضمن توزيعاً متساوياً للإغاثة الإنسانية لكل فئات المجتمع العراقي“، بما في ذلك المواطنين العراقيين المقيمين في المحافظات الشمالية الثلاث، التي لم تكن تخضع للإشراف الإداري للحكومة المركزية32. إن اللاجئين العراقيين الحاليين يعيشون نفس الحتلة كونهم خارج سلطة الحكومة المركزية التي تحكم العراق.

إن مسؤولية الدول تجاه اللاجئين تنبثق من القانون الدولي33.إن إلزام الدولة العراقية، بموجب قرار من مجلس الأمن، بأن تخصص النسبة المطلوبة من عائداتها للمواطنين العراقيين المهجرين هو الطريق الوحيد الناجح لدولة المهجرين وللمجتمع الدولي للاضطلاع بالتزاماتهم تجاه اللاجئين العراقيين والدول المضيفة لهم والحفاظ على حقوق اللاجئين وكرامتهم كمواطنين عراقيين. وبإمكان وكالات الإغاثة التابعة للأمم المتحدة ومؤسسات الدول المضيفة والمنظمات غير الحكومية وممثلي اللاجئين العراقيين الإشراف على توزيع العائدات المخصصة.

حان أوان العمل

إن العراقيين من المهجرين داخليا واللاجئين لا يحتملون انتظار الوفاء باحتياجاتهم الأساسية إلى أن يعودوا إلى مساكنهم ، وعلى المجتمع الدولي التزام أخلاقي بالتحرك الآن. فقرار مجلس الأمن رقم 986 لعام 1995 نص على أن عائدات النفط العراقي هي لكل العراقيين . اللاجئون العراقيون بصفتهم مواطنين عراقيين ، لهم حقوق متساوية في تقاسم ثروة العراق.

نحن نهيب بكل الحكومات، ومنظمات الأمم المتحدة ووكالاتها ، والمنظمات القانونية والإنسانية ومنظمات حقوق الإنسان وكل من لديه ضمير للعمل سوية من أجل ضمان إعتماد مجلس الأمن وتنفيذه هذا المقترح الذي يلزم الدولة العراقية بتخصيص عائدات النفط للاجئين العراقيين.

إننا نطالب بأن تقوم الدول ، وبخاصة تلك الدول التي اشتركت في الغزو غير الشرعي للعراق وتدميره ، بالوفاء بالتزاماتها ومسؤولياتها وتوفّر التمويل الضروري للمفوضية السامية للأمم المتحدة لشئون اللاجئين للقيام بمهمتها لحماية المهجّرين العراقيين.34

إننا نهيب بالجميع للتبرع بالأموال واتخاذ كل التدابير لتقديم المساعدة المباشرة للاجئين العراقيين وللمنظمات التي تساعدهم.

إن الإنسانية في وضع مأساوي في العراق؛ ومسؤوليتنا الأخلاقية تحتم علينا إنقاذها، فانضم إلينا.

المبادرة العراقية الدولية بِشأن اللاجئين العراقيين.

25/11/2007
_______

_____________________

اول الموقعين

Hans von Sponeck, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (1998-2000), Germany.
Denis Halliday, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (1997-1998), Ireland.
Ms. Niloufer Bhagwat, Advocate, Vice President of the Indian Association of Lawyers.
Mathias Chang, 37 years in the antiwar movement, Malaysia.
Sabah Al-Mukhtar, President Arab Lawyers Association, UK.
Issam Al-Chalabi, Former Iraqi Oil Minister, Iraq-Jordan.
Saeed .H. Hassan, Former Iraqi Permanent Representative to the UN, Iraq -Egypt.
Dr Curtis F J Doebbler, Professor of law, at Najah National University, Nablus, Palestine.
Dirk Adriaensens, Member Executive Committee BRussells Tribunal, Belgium.
Dahr Jamail, Independent Journalist, Author of ‘Beyond the Green Zone: Dispatches from an Unembedded Journalist in Occupied Iraq”, USA.
Paola Manduca, Geneticist and Antiwar Activist, New Weapons, Italy.
Bert De Belder, M.D., Coordinator, Medical Aid for the Third World, Belgium.
Mohammed Aref, Science Writer, Advisor for ‘Arab Science&Technology Foundation’, UAE.
Abdul Ilah Albayaty, Writer, Iraqi Political Analyst, Iraq-France.
Dr Ian Douglas, Writer, Egypt.
Hana Al Bayaty, Iraqi International Initiative Coordinator, France-Iraq / Egypt.

1 See Indictment, Complaint and Petition on behalf of 4.5 million Iraqi Children , by Professor Francis Boyle, September 1991; World Heath Organization report on annual mortality rates and excess deaths of children under five in Iraq, 1991-98; and A Different Kind of War: The UN Sanctions Regime in Iraq, (Berghahn Books: New York, September 2006) by Hans C Von Sponeck, former UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq who resigned in protest in February 2000. Sponeck’s predecessor, Denis Halliday, resigned in October 1998 after a 34-year UN career saying “I don’t want to administer a program that satisfies the definition of genocide.” See also US Genocide in Iraq by Dr Ian Douglas with Abdul Ilah Albayaty and Hana Al Bayaty, published by The BRussells Tribunal, June 2007.

2 The UNSC — in particular the veto-wielding permanent members — failed to prevent the US/UK illegal war of aggression on Iraq and to censure UN member states that participated in that war of aggression. In failing to prevent this violation of international law, or appeal against the war of aggression, the UNSC violated the UN Charter. On 8 June 2004, the UNSC compounded this abnegation of its responsibilities, further failing the people of Iraq, by adopting UNSC Resolution 1546 in which it appealed to member states to assist an illegal and sectarian US-imposed Iraqi government that daily violates human rights. Article 41(2) of the International Law Commission’s Draft Articles on State Responsibility, representing customary international law and adopted in UN General Assembly Resolution 56/83 of 28 January 2002 (“Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts”), prevents states from benefiting from their own illegal acts: “No state shall recognize as lawful a situation created by a serious breach [of an obligation arising under a peremptory norm of general international law]” (emphasis added). See also Section III, UN General Assembly Resolution 36/103 of 14 December 1962, “Declaration on the Inadmissibility of Intervention and Interference in the Internal Affairs of States”. The UNSC also failed in its duty to protect by remaining silent as Order #1 of US civil administrator Paul Bremer, overseeing the “de-Baathification” of Iraqi society, flagrantly breached protected human rights; while the destruction of Fallujah by coalition forces in November 2004 constituted collective punishment, war crimes and crimes against humanity; and while the US-established Iraqi Special Tribunal flagrantly breached the laws of war and the 1949 Third Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War leading to summary executions after unfair trails.

3 The obligations of the UNSC are defined by chapters I and V of the UN Charter

4 The 1950 Nuremberg Principles list “crimes against peace” as first among crimes imputable under international law, defined as: “(i) Planning, preparation, initiation or waging of a war of aggression or a war in violation of international treaties, agreements or assurances; (ii) Participation of a common plan or conspiracy for the accomplishment of any of the acts mentioned under (i).” On 16 September 2004, then UN Secretary General Kofi Annan told the BBC that the US-led invasion of Iraq was an illegal act that contravened the UN Charter. See also US illegality in Iraq: Where is the Limit?, The BRussells Tribunal, March 2006, and Only Resistance is Legal, published by The BRussells Tribunal, October 2006.

5 The UNHCR in an appeal of 8 January 2007 noted that the current Iraqi exodus is the largest long-term population movement in the region since the displacement of Palestinians following the creation of the State of Israel in 1948.

6 In addition to the cluster-sample estimate made by The Lancet medical journal, which put the number of Iraqis who died from violent deaths as of July 2006 at a minimum of 655,000, the data of a poll conducted in Iraq by Opinion Business Research released in September 2007 suggests a total of 1,220,580 deaths since the invasion in 2003.

7 UNHCR report Statistics on displaced Iraqis around the world, September 2007.

8 AFP release of 5 November 2007.

9 UNHCR report Statistics on displaced Iraqis around the world, September 2007. This report includes numbers of Iraqis displaced under the UN-administered sanctions regime, as well as internally displaced peoples and externally displaced peoples since the 2003 illegal invasion of Iraq.

10 See List of assassinated Iraqi academics, compiled and published by The BRussells Tribunal; List of assassinated Iraqi media professionals, compiled and published by The BRussells Tribunal; Four years into the occupation: No health for Iraq, report by Dr Bert de Belder, published by The BRussells Tribunal, 21 March 2007; List of assassinated Imams and mosques workers, compiled and published by The BRussells Tribunal; and Iraqi killing fields, BRussells Tribunal. See also the UN IRIN News Agency report on threats against lawyers. In April 2006 IRIN News reported more than 300,000 widows in Baghdad alone, with 90 newly widowed daily countrywide. While addressing Rotarians in a speech broadcast by C-SPAN 5 September 2007, Samir Sumaidaie, Iraqi Ambassador to the US, stated that there were 500,000 new widows in Iraq.

11 See Global Policy’s Torture and Prison Abuse in Iraq and Amnesty International’s 2007 report on Iraq.

12 See Global Policy’s War and Occupation in Iraq report, chapter 6, Attacks on Cities, revised in June 2007. Most Iraqi cities are under siege, with Baghdad divided into walled-in communities. Among other “gated communities” are Tel Afar, Fallujah, Al Qaim, Samarra, Yathreb, Haditha, Hit and Khalidiyah. See Their Next Massacre and This Wall is their Grave, published by The BRussells Tribunal, respectively on 28 November 2006 and 25 April 2007.

13 See UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, Human Rights Report, 1 April – 30 June 2007.

14 The UNHCR in an appeal of 8 January 2007 noted that 40 per cent of the Iraqi middle class has fled the country.

15 See Resolution on the Humanitarian Situation of Iraqi Refugees of the European Parliament, 12 July 2007.

16 Article 1 of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

17 See articles 1, 3, 22 and 23 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted and proclaimed by UN General Assembly Resolution 217 A (III), 10 December 1948.

18 See article 111 of the Fourth Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War on occupied territories.

19 See Global Policy’s October 2006 War and Occupation in Iraq report chapter 3, Indiscriminate and Especially Injurious Weapons chapter 6, Attacks on Cities chapter 7, Killing Civilians, Murder and Atrocities and; War Crimes Committed by the United States in Iraq and Mechanisms for Accountability, October 2006.

20 All the sectarian groups participating in the US-supported Iraqi government have their own militias, many of which were integrated into the so-called Iraqi security forces. US security contractors, the Iraqi police, army, and ministry guards have participated with the US army in persecuting their opponents. Financing come directly or indirectly with the complicity of the government.

21 Oxfam and NCCI report, Rising to the Humanitarian Challenge in Iraq, July 2007. The report states that the number of Iraqis without adequate supplies of water has risen from 50 per cent to 70 per cent since 2003, and that most homes in Baghdad and other cities receive only two hours of electricity per day.

22 By “international community” we include governments, international organisations and associations, and civil society actors.

23 See the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. An overview of definition and obligations can be found here. See also General Assembly Resolutions relating to refugees and the UNHCR.

24 See UNHCR release Syria and Jordan still wait for help despite pledges made at Iraq meeting, UNHCR Briefing Notes, 6 July 2007, Iraq displacement: Generous host countries left in the lurch, and IRIN News, 6 July 2007, and Aid agencies struggle to support over two million displaced Iraqis, 11 November 2007.

25 See article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

26 See articles 54 and 64 of the Fourth Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in the Time of War.

27 See chapter 5, article 25, of the UN Charter.

28 See section Schedule, paragraph 15 of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

29 See UN General Assembly Resolution 1803 (XVII), 14 December 1962, “Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources”.

30 See the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, also reiterated by UN General Assembly Resolutions of 21 December 1995, 12 December 1996, 12 December 1997 and 18 December 2002. See Responsibility for Refugees (pdf).

31 See UNSC Resolution 986, 14 April 1995.

32 In 1991, Turkey shut its borders to the flow of refugees coming mainly from Northern Iraq, refusing to apply the jus cogens principle of “non-refoulement” (prohibition on the expulsion of refugees to an area where they may face persecution). As a consequence, the UNSC, realizing this principle wasn’t sufficient to protect the refugee population, passed resolution 688, adding political solutions into the equation of refugee protection. Resolution 688 required the State of Iraq to allow the UNHCR to work inside its territory and set up a “security zone” in Northern Iraq. This decision began a new practice in refugee law protection. In 1995, Resolution 986 allocated part of national Iraqi resources to the population not under the authority of the Iraqi government (3 northern governorates). Resolution 1314 and 1325 further emphasized the tendency in international jurisprudence on the protection of refugee populations to insist on the responsibility of states to assist civilians, including refugees and the displaced. These resolutions created a legal precedent that obliges and allows the UNSC to draft a resolution requiring the allocation of a proportionate part of Iraqi oil revenues to current Iraqi refugees, so as to protect their human rights and in the knowledge that Iraqi oil is the property of all Iraqis, inside or outside Iraq. This tendency is reflected by UNHCR appeals and the final declaration (pdf) of the World Summit in 2005.

33 See the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.

34 The government of Iraq has allocated only $25 million for Iraqi refugees while its national revenues amount to billions of dollars.

International Anti Occupation Network

Recent articles

Links


Search

Contact | RSS feed