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"The statement also lauded the courageous stance of church leaders, especially in the United States and the United Kingdom, 'in direct opposition to the positions taken by their political leadership .(







War on Iraq Immoral: World Churches 

Saturday, February 22 2003 @ 04:17 AM GMT 

GENEVA - The World Council of Churches (WCC), which groups Christian and Orthodox churches worldwide, on Friday, February 21, branded as immoral and unwise looming U.S.-British war on Iraq and praised U.S. and British churches for standing up to politicians in their countries.

The WCC executive committee said in a statement that it "strongly deplores the fact that the most powerful nations of this world again regard war as an acceptable instrument of foreign policy," Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported.

"War against Iraq would be immoral, unwise, and in breach of the principles of the United Nations Charter," it averred after a meeting.

Humanitarian Crisis Of Grave Magnitude

Warning of a humanitarian crisis of grave magnitude, the WCC also appealed to the U.N. Security Council to "strictly limit the legitimate use of military force and to refrain from creating negative precedents and lowering the threshold for using violent means to solve international conflicts".

The statement also lauded the courageous stance of church leaders, especially in the United States and the United Kingdom, "in direct opposition to the positions taken by their political leadership."

On Thursday, February 20, the leaders of Britain's two major Christian churches joined growing public opposition to military action, casting doubt on British Prime Minister Tony Blair's moral argument and urging more time for U.N. weapons inspections.

"20 years of inspections are more effective, less costly and more relevant than 20 days of war," the WCC executive committee said.

It recognized the need to disarm Iraq, but it also said there was a need "to make the whole Middle East region free from weapons of mass destruction".

The WCC groups 342 Christian churches -- Protestant, Anglican and Orthodox, but not the Roman Catholic Church.

Philippines Church, Students Join Opposition to Iraq War

Churches' opposition to war on Iraq extended to Manila, where nuns, students and activists made up a crowd of 1,000 Friday at an anti-war rally led by Philippine Church leader Cardinal Jaime Sin at a Roman Catholic Church shrine, AFP said.

The nuns and students lit candles while members of the Bayan group unfurled anti-war and anti-United States banners as the Manila archbishop celebrated mass.

Sin, in his homily, urged the faithful to "proclaim the gospel of peace to a humanity strongly tempted by hatred and violence."

Echoing Vatican Pope John Paul II, who has been exerting efforts to prevent a U.S.-led military campaign against Iraq, the cardinal said: "We must not be resigned as though war is inevitable."

On Monday, January 13, the Pope renewed his opposition to the potential military action against Iraq, saying that all diplomatic means to break the deadlock should be exhausted before war be declared the "very last option".

"Let us allow international law, honest dialogue, solidarity between states and the noble exercise of diplomacy to take root in our efforts for peace."

President Gloria Arroyo has been a staunch supporter of U.S. President George W. Bush's hard-line Iraq policy.

-[IslamOnline & News Agencies (] Published at the Palestine Chronicle.


How can we manifest peace on earth if we do not include everyone (all races, all nations, all religions, both sexes) in our vision of Peace?

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