As Violence Escalates in Iraq, Iraqi Woman Makes Rare Trip to Portland to
Speak Out for Peace on Third Anniversary of War
Eman Ahmed Khamas will speak in Portland on March 19-20 about daily life in
Iraq and the possibility of impending civil war
WHEN: Monday, March 20, 2006 7:00-8:30 PM
WHERE: First Unitarian Church, Salmon Street Sanctuary, 1011 SW 12th Avenue
(at Salmon), Portland Oregon
Khamas is also speaking:
Sunday, March 19 at the "End the War, Begin the Peace" rally at Waterfront Park in Portland beginning at 2:00.
Sunday, March 19 Women's Convergence and Feeder March begins 12:15pm in the South Park Blocks, SW Madison & Park.
Monday, March 20 at a press conference in front of the Federal Building (SW 3rd & Jefferson) in support of lobbyists demanding Senator Wyden take steps to end the occupation of Iraq.
WHAT: On March 19-20 in Portland Oregon, Eman Ahmed Khamas will speak and show photos about her first-hand experience of the situation in Iraq, especially the escalation of violence that's occurred since the bombing of the Golden Mosque in Samarra. Khamas arrived in the United States on March 5th with a delegation of Iraqi women who want to tell their stories to the American public and urge US and UN officials to create a peace plan to end the escalating cycle of violence.
Khamas is a journalist, translator and human rights activist who lives in Baghdad with her husband and two daughters. She is a member of the Women's Will organization, which focuses on defining and defending women's rights outside of political party interests and opposing incarceration of women as hostages. Khamas regularly publishes articles on women's conditions in Iraq since the March 2003 invasion, and has documented human rights violations committed by US and Iraqi forces. She is also involved in mobilizing emergency relief (medicines, food and clothing) for victims of the war, especially women and children living in refugee camps.
The Iraqi women's delegation that Khamas is part of is promoting a Women's Call for Peace that's been signed by 100,000 women around the globe. The call urges a shift in strategy in Iraq, from a military model to a conflict resolution model. It requests the withdrawal of all foreign troops and foreign fighters from Iraq, negotiations to reincorporate disenfranchised Iraqis, full representation of women in the peacemaking process, and a commitment to women's equality in the post-war Iraq. The full text is available at www.womensaynotowar.org.
The Iraq war has cost the lives of tens of thousands of Iraqis (estimates range from 28,535 to over 100,000) and some 2,300 US troops. As the
three-year anniversary of the war approaches, the country is wracked by violence and threatened with the prospect of civil war, Iraqi civilians are
suffering from a lack of basic services, including electricity and clean water, and women's rights are being eroded.
Eman's visit to Portland is being co-sponsored by the American Friends Service Committee, CODEPINK Portland, First Unitarian Church Social Justice Council, Living Earth Gatherings, Peace and Justice Works Iraq Affinity Group and Women's International League for Peace and Freedom.