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Melbourne Commission urges churches to back UN on Iraq

The Melbourne Archdiocesan Commission for Justice Development and Peace (CCJDP) issued a statement on Friday condemning the proposed US attack on Iraq as "morally unjustified".

Instead of condoning the "slaughter of innocent Iraqi children, women and men," churches should support the United Nations.

"The Churches and UN have a common purpose because we cannot countenance the human cost and likely consequences of war on Iraq," said CCJDP Executive Officer Marc Purcell.

"The remarks of Bush and Blair about their willingness to use nuclear warheads are deeply disturbing and also illegal under international law," he said. "The number of ordinary Iraqi people killed and maimed in any invasion is intolerable given the weak justifications provided thus far."

Mr Purcell called for Australian Prime Minister John Howard to agree "to discuss with the Australian people the human cost of war on the Iraqi people".

"The evidence of possession of weapons of mass destruction presented so far has been unconvincing as grounds for war," he said. "Rather a policy of containment and ongoing UN inspections provides a reasonable alternative to war. A just cause is lacking."

Catholic Commission for Justice Development and Peace

Melbourne Commission calls Iraq war 'morally questionable' (24/1/03)
ACSJC Briefing (Feb 03)
New Vatican nuncio to U.N. finds Iraq crisis at top of his agenda (Catholic News Service)
Vatican Newspaper Opposes "Preventive War" on Iraq (Zenit)
US Envoy "Taken Aback" by Vatican Criticism on Iraq (Catholic World News)
Pax Christi continues to urge diplomatic solution to Iraq crisis (30/1/03)
Catholic justice council questions Iraq 'pre-deployment' (28/1/03)

3 Feb 2003