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      U.S. Hands Off Iran, Yemen & Venezuela!

      By Janine Solanki


      Every day there are more and more reasons to oppose the deadly U.S. war drive that is attacking innocent people around the world.

      In Iran:

      Since U.S. President Trump broke the Iran nuclear deal last year, the U.S. has been intensifying their brutal sanctions and threats on Iran as part of a “massive pressure campaign”. This has caused huge strain to the Iranian economy. On August 19, 2019 an NBC news report quoted Arash Ahmadian, the head of Iran’s Mahak Pediatric Cancer Center, saying that “strict U.S. financial sanctions have spooked foreign banks from touching any transaction with Iran, even for those permitted under the sanctions laws.” In October of 2018, the International Court of Justice ruled that so-called humanitarian exemptions in the U.S. sanctions are insufficient, leaving “little prospect of improvement” in the “serious detrimental impact on the health and lives” of Iranian individuals. The result today is children in Iran are dying from a lack of vital cancer drug imports.

      In Yemen:

      The effects of imperialist countries are also bringing suffering to the Yemeni people. Last year the United Nations called the situation in Yemen the worst humanitarian crisis in the world. In February 2019, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs found the “severity of needs is deepening”, with the number of people in acute need, a staggering 27 per cent higher than last year. This amounts to more than 20 million people across the country that are food insecure, half of whom are suffering extreme levels of hunger. This is the crisis of over four years of a Saudi-led, U.S.-backed bombing and war, as well as a land, sea and air blockade preventing medicines, food, fuel and other essential aid from reaching the Yemeni people.

      In Venezuela:

      The tactic of indiscriminate targeting of a population through sanctions is also being used against the Venezuelan people. On August 5, 2019 U.S. President Trump signed an Executive Order that further increases the cruel and illegal blockade against Venezuela. This murderous blockade has already killed an estimated 40,000 people in Venezuela. The U.S. government has used a failed coup and sanctions to attempt to force “regime-change” and overthrow the democratically elected government of President Nicolas Maduro. While these methods haven’t worked, the Trump administration has repeatedly stated that a military intervention in Venezuela is “on the table”.

      On August 23, Vancouver’s antiwar coalition Mobilization Against War and Occupation (MAWO) took to the street to oppose all of these criminal imperialist wars and occupations. MAWO’s monthly antiwar rally and petition campaign set up in downtown Vancouver’s busy Robson street plaza, with picket signs and banners reading “Don’t attack Iran!” and “U.S./Saudi Arabia Hands Off Yemen!” An information table was busy with people stopping to find out more information, talk to organizers and pick up antiwar literature, while teams of activists collected petition signatures. Passersby were particularly interested to sign the petition demanding that Canada stop its $15 billion arms deal supplying Saudi Arabia with so-called “light” armored vehicles – essentially heavily weaponized military vehicles.

      MAWO’s monthly action, and other antiwar events and actions will continue as long as these imperialist wars, occupations and sanctions continue to attack oppressed nations around the world. To find out about the next action visit www.mawovancouver.org, follow MAWO on Facebook or on Twitter @MAWOVan

      Follow Janine on Twitter: @janinesolanki

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