The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:
No Troops for Iraq
Foreign Minister, Natwar Singh, addressing a joint press conference with the US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, is reported to have said that the situation in Iraq has changed. He has cited the latest UN Security Council resolution on Iraq as another reason for reexamining the question of sending Indian troops to Iraq.
The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) wishes to assert that there is no change in the situation in Iraq whatsoever. Iraq has been under American occupation for the last fourteen months. There is a popular uprising against the brutal occupation.
The latest UN Security Council resolution has approved the setting up of an interim government in Iraq by June 30. It has also approved the continuance of a multinational force under US command. As far as the interim government is concerned, it is handpicked by the US authorities. In fact, the Prime Minister appointee has himself admitted that he has a longstanding relationship with the CIA. The people of Iraq have had no say whatsoever in constituting the interim government. It is nothing but a creature of the US occupation.
The Security Council resolution for the stationing of a multinational force in Iraq till 2006 does not mean there will be a UN peace-keeping force. The 138,000 US troops will continue to remain alongwith a small force from its allies as the so-called multinational force. France, Germany, Russia and Canada have announced they will not send troops.
The Indian Foreign Minister’s ambiguous remarks in Washington must be clarified. The Manmohan Singh government must make it clear that there is no question of sending Indian troops to Iraq to bolster the American occupation.