Anti-war campaigners from across the globe are heading to London on Saturday 1 December to attend the World Against War conference, organised by the Stop the War Coalition.
Leading figures from across the anti-war movement will be there.
Representatives from Iraq include Hassan Jumaa, president of the Basra Oil Workers Union, Jawad Al Khalassi, general secretary of the Iraq Foundation Congress, and Hannah Ibrahim of Women’s Will Iraq.
Brigitte Ostmeyer from the new German left party Die Linke, Egyptian MP and leader of the democracy movement Hamdeen Sabahy, Tony Benn, and former humanitarian coordinators in Iraq Dennis Halliday and Hans Von Sponeck will also attend.
George Martin, from the US United for Peace and Justice coalition, is coming to the conference. He is a former member of the Black Panther party and is now one of the leaders of the Green Party in the US.
George told Socialist Worker, “The peace movement has to work internationally. The Stop the War Coalition is one of our strongest allies.
“Our countries are responsible for the horrific situation in Iraq. Here in the belly of the beast it is good to know that we are demonstrating with people in other countries on global days of action, affecting our governments as best we can.
“I’m looking forward to meeting with our allies from Iraq. We will share the truth and strategise towards working to end the crisis in the Middle East.
“We are seeing threats to Iran with the same kind of innuendos we saw against Iraq. This time it’s over nuclear facilities and not weapons of mass destruction, but it’s very similar.
“All this is being perpetrated by the US administration, Congress and the media.
“The anti-war movement represents what the US looks like. It is important our voices are heard.”
Karamat Ali, a member of the Pakistan Peace Coalition and one of the organisers of the World Social Forum in Karachi in March 2006, will be speaking at the conference.
He told Socialist Worker, “We want to join our voices in opposition to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and also the ‘war on terror’ being fought within Pakistan.
“One of the reasons for martial law and the clampdown at the moment is the war in the tribal regions.
“We want to share our fight for democracy in Pakistan with other people.
“We have been working on a campaign for disarmament. Pakistan and India, which are in a permanent state of hostility, are major arms buyers from the West and former Soviet Union.
“We want to join hands with people from the global peace movement to do something to stop the arms trade.”
Trade union branches, student unions, Stop the War groups, community and peace groups in Britain are all sending delegates to the conference.
They include Oxford University student union, Barnsley GMB union branch, Manchester TUC and the South Asia Solidarity Campaign.
The conference will be one of the issues raised during Stop the War’s days of action against an attack on Iran on Thursday and Saturday of this week.
For more information or to register go to » www.stopwar.org.uk or phone 020 7278 6694