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UK WILPF urges government to act for Middle East peace: arms sale embargo, diplomatic efforts and no military action

Concerned about dangerous and volatile situations, particularly in Syria, Iraq and Libyia, and the plight of civilians, especially women and children, UK WILPF asks how HM Government can help to bring peace to the Middle East and North Africa.

It is not surprising that survivors of those situations put themselves into the hands of traffickers to try to save their families. Some end up seeking asylum in Europe; others die on the way.

British Governments have been too ready to take military action in this region in the recent past, leaving chaos, violence and displaced people in their wake.  Yet there are still calls for more bombing and even further military intervention.  Please assure us that:

  1. There will be no further bombing raids by British personnel and Parliament will not be invited to vote to extend military action in the Middle East region
  2. There will be an embargo on British arms sales to any country in the region – including Israel
  3. Your Government will work to persuade all Security Council members, (including Russia) to stop selling arms and equipment to all sides in the region
  4. You will make personal diplomatic efforts to work with others  and through the United Nations to bring the factions in the region to a conference table in an effort to broker a negotiated settlement
  5. UN Security Council Resolution 1325 ‘Women Peace and Security’ will be at the heart of any agreement

We must not let the situation in the Middle East escalate further while our attention is distracted elsewhere.

WILPF International was a signatory to the letter published in The Guardian: The world must act to stop Syria’s suffering

Letter to the Prime Minister, September 2015

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