Kate Hudson Chair of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament rejected Tony Blair’s claim today that 1441 was a legal basis for war. She drew attention to the opinion of two leading lawyers from Matrix, London, who gave an opinion on the illegality of war on behalf of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, before the Iraq war had even begun. Their opinion clearly stated that the UK would be in breach of International law without a further UN resolution.
Article 2(4) of the UN Charter prohibits the use of force by member states except for reasons of self defence or following an authorisation from the Security Council. CND’s case demonstrated that resolution 1441 did not expressly authorise member states to use force. The fact that the US and UK went to war without a second resolution means that the use of force was illegal.
CND also rejected any justification of pre emptive war, without an immediate threat, as both illegal and immoral.
Kate Hudson, Chair of CND said
“The government cannot hide behind Resolution 1441. As Hans Blix said, without a second resolution the war was illegal. We warned the UK Government before the war began that the use of force against Iraq, without Security Council authorisation, was a clear violation of international law. The legal opinion we received stated clearly that resolution 1441 did not expressly authorise member states to use force.
CND totally reject Tony Blairs attempts to justify pre-emptive war, without an immediate threat, as both illegal and immoral and calls for the international community to safeguard against any attempts to change international law to allow it.”
Notes to Editor
1. For further information on the case please contact Ruth Tanner CND’s Press & Communications Officer on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859
2. The full content of the opinions given by Rabinder Singh QC and Charlotte Kilroy [In the matter of the potential use of armed force by the UK against Iraq and in the matter of reliance for that use on United Nations Security Council Resolution] can be found here
3. The case was brought before three judges who wouldn’t give an opinion as they claimed international law was outside their jurisdiction and it was not in the public interest for the issue to be discussed, because it related to foreign and defence policy. For further information on the judges ruling please contact Ruth Tanner CND’s Press & Communications Officer on 0207 7002350 or 07968 420859
4. CND are one of the organisers for the demonstration to mark the anniversary of the Iraq war on Saturday 20th March. For further information contact Ruth Tanner CND’s Press & Communications Officer on 0207 7002350
5. CND is one of Europe’s biggest single-issue peace campaigns, with over 32,000 members in the UK.