NEW YORK - November 21 - Concerned citizens from over 150 countries have supported a campaign to run newspaper ads in the United States and United Kingdom today calling for a new strategy for Iraq, including a U.N.-led international peace conference. The effort is organized by CeasefireCampaign.org, an online activist network of 340,000 citizens that rose up to demand a ceasefire in the conflict in Lebanon last July.
"People around the world agree that the solution in Iraq must be political, not military, and genuinely international, not unilateral," said Ricken Patel, the director of CeasefireCampaign.org. "It's time that the U.S. finally passed the diplomatic steering wheel to a more legitimate and impartial international mediator, like the United Nations."
The ad calls for a "N.E.W." plan for Iraq: (1) Negotiate with all Iraqi factions and neighbors; (2) Empower the international community to lead negotiations; and (3) Withdraw responsibly, according to the wishes of the Iraqi people.
"The recent elections showed us that we stand with the American people in our desire to see a fundamentally new direction in Iraq," said Patel. "When both the U.S. and the current Iraqi government lack the legitimacy to act as an honest broker, the international community must fill that void."
The first ads will be full page and quarter page ads run in U.S. and U.K. newspapers on Tuesday, Nov. 21. The ad can be seen at http://www.CeasefireCampaign.org.
EDITOR'S NOTE: A publication-ready, high-resolution image supporting this release is available at http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20061121/105.
CeasefireCampaign.org is a project of Res Publica, a global civic advocacy group. Res Publica is a community of public sector professionals dedicated to promoting good governance, civic virtue and deliberative democracy. It is a registered charitable organization based in New York City. Web: http://www.therespublica.org