Protests demand 'No more blood for oil!'

February 25, 1998


Protests demand 'No more blood for oil!'

More than 1000 people marched from Defence Plaza to the US consulate in Sydney on February 21 to protest against the US plans to bomb Iraq. The protesters demanded that the US get out of the gulf, that the Australian government withdraw its support and that the blockade on Iraq be lifted.

Speakers at the rally included the most senior Muslim cleric in Australia, Mufti Tajadin Hilaly, Shiek Zaidan, Catholic chaplain Father Peter Maher, Dennis Doherty from Pax Christi, NSW Labor MLC Meredith Burgmann and representatives of the Iraqi community and left parties in Sydney.

Both the Greens and ALP left leader Anthony Albanese sent messages of support to the rally.

A meeting of representatives from left and progressive groups in Sydney on February 17 formed the Stop the Gulf War Coalition. The coalition has called for a rally outside the US consulate at 5pm on the day the US bombing starts.

A demonstration outside the US Consulate on Saturday, February 28, has also been organised.

The Stop the Gulf War Coalition adopted as its demands: No bombing of Iraq; Australian and US troops out; End sanctions now; and stop the slaughter. The coalition is working closely with the Arab Committee for Peace and other Arab community organisations.

The coalition meets Tuesdays, 6.30pm, University of Technology, Sydney. Phone (02) 9517 9425.

"No more blood for oil!" was the catchcry of a speak-out held outside the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade office in Brisbane on February 20. Around 50 people gathered outside the Commonwealth Government Building to protest against the decision to send Australian troops to wage war against Iraq.

Speakers denounced the US government's renewed aggression against the Iraqi people, calling for all Australian forces to be brought home immediately.

A meeting is to be held at the 4ZZZ offices in Fortitude Valley on February 23 to relaunch the Gulf Action Coalition, which organised protests against the first Gulf War in 1991. For more information, phone (07) 3254 0565 or 3844 3308.

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