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Final Resolution of Madrid International Seminar

| 23 April 2006

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Final Resolution of the Madrid International Seminar on the Assassination of Iraqi Academics and Health Professionals, 22-23 April 2006

This weekend participants from 8 countries — including Iraq — met in Madrid, along with active committees working within the framework of the conclusions of the World Tribunal on Iraq and participants from Spanish universities, to discuss and hear firsthand the plight of Iraqi academics and medical professionals who struggle to live amid constant threats, physical violence, kidnappings and the operation of death squads.

To date, over 220 Iraqi health professionals have been murdered. The BRussells Tribunal and The Spanish Campaign Against the Occupation and for the Sovereignty of Iraq (CEOSI) has, with the help and support of Iraqis, compiled a list of over 190 assassinated Iraqi academics.

During the second day of the international seminar, participants focused on what actions can be taken to bring global attention to the destruction of Iraq’s intellectual and professional resources and hold accountable those directly responsible, including occupying powers that have failed their obligations under international law to protect the lives of Iraqi civilians.

We affirm the following:

• The defence of Iraqi academics and medical professionals should begin by condemning the illegal war and occupation that created the situation in Iraq where assassinations are endemic and go unpunished
• Occupying powers and their collaborators are responsible for the protection of the lives of Iraqi civilians and imputable under international law for the failure to do so
• The assassination of Iraqi academics and health professionals is part of a conscious attempt to prevent Iraq from regaining its just independent and sovereign status
• Defending Iraqi academics and health professionals is not separate from the necessity of being in solidarity with the Iraqi people and their national anti-occupation movement
• Iraqis, like all people, have a right to science and education and to enjoy the inalienable rights of freedom of thought, expression, research and innovation
• The right of families of assassinated health professionals and academics to have the killing of their loved ones investigated by an independent and competent body, and compensation paid, must be assured in all cases

In terms of action, delegates reaffirm their commitment to work with determination to raise at all levels the issue of the criminal destruction of Iraq’s professional and intellectual wealth. In particular, delegations committed to:

• Demand that UNESCO act in defence of Iraq’s intellectuals and professionals
• Demand that the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights fulfil its duty to protect the lives and human rights of Iraqi doctors and academics, and all Iraqi civilians
• Spread awareness of the issue of the assassination of Iraqi academics and doctors with the appreciated commitment of Autonomous University, Madrid, to transmit the key concerns of this campaign to Spanish universities, the International Federation of Universities and the Association of Arab Universities of the Arab League
• Call upon the world’s media to understand that the killing of Iraqi academics and health professionals is a result of the occupation, not sectarian civil war
• Continue working to build an international solidarity campaign linking Iraqi academics in exile and in Iraq with their peers in universities worldwide
• Press national and regional parliaments to raise and discuss the criminal destruction of Iraq’s intellectual and professional class

The undersigned affirm that they will continue to cooperate in their denunciation of the occupation and its numberless crimes and always stand in solidarity with the people of Iraq.

The Iraqi delegation of witnesses

The Spanish Campaign Against the Occupation and for the Sovereignty of Iraq (CEOSI)

The BRussells Tribunal

The International Action Center

Women’s Will Association (Iraq)

Iraq Solidarity Association in Stockholm

Iraq Tribunal Initiative, Germany

Tribunal-Iraque (Portugal)

The National Association of British Arabs

Medical Aid for the Third World

STOP USA (Stop United States of Aggression), Belgium

Iraqi Patriots in Media and Culture

Plaforma Aturem la Guerra de Barcelona

This statement was written by Ian Douglas and was first published by the BRussells Tribunal: http://brussellstribunal.org/SeminarMadrid.htm
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We negate and we must negate because something in us wants to live and affirm — Friedrich Nietzsche