RENGO Statement on Iraq

6 March 2003

Japanese Trade Union Confederation (RENGO)

The weapons inspections in Iraq under United Nations Security Council Resolution 1441 are underway with a view to renouncing all weapons of mass destruction. The Security Council will open a discussion on 7 March based on the report of the weapons inspectors. It is unfortunate that, according to the interim report of the inspectors, Iraq has met the requirements neither of Security Council Resolution 1441 nor expectations of the international community. The United States, the United Kingdom and others, questioning the effectiveness of further continuing the inspections, proposed a new Security Council resolution allowing the next stage to take place base on a conclusion that Iraq has missed the last chance. In responding to this, France, Russia and others have clearly expressed their objection to the use of military at the current stage and stressed the need to continue and strengthen the inspection process.

Rengo has not accepted and will not accept any use of nuclear weapons, or of weapons of mass destruction, as Japan is a sole atomic bomb victim. It has recognised that peaceful means within the framework of the United Nations and the international cooperation centred at it must be taken to disarm Iraq.

Consequently, RENGO has decided in its 20th Executive Board meeting the following appeals and will work for them to be taken by world leaders, while strengthening the solidarity with other trade union centres through the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU).

  1. Rengo reiterates the condemnation of Iraqi regime’s persistent flouting of the decision of the United Nations. The Iraqi regime should respect the terms of the UN Security Council Resolution 1441 and cooperate fully with the weapons inspectors. It should provide all evidences concerning weapons of mass destruction and take an immediate action to ensure full renouncement of them.

  2. The US Administration should listen to voices of people over the world asking for the global peace and should not take military action outside of the framework of the United Nations or without the authority of the Security Council.

  3. The Government of Japan should listen to voice of Japanese people seeking peaceful resolution, press on the Iraqi regime the need to renounce all weapons of mass destruction and to this end ask for support of other countries to the peaceful resolution. The Government should, furthermore, ensure the full disclosure of all relevant information and do its duty as a government.