Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Help Iraqis Keep Their Oil

Amidst rising bloodshed, President Bush has told the Iraqi Parliament they have till the 31st of May to pass a flawed oil law that could give multinational companies unprecedented control of Iraq's oil fields. But some Iraqi leaders are daring to resist - and they need our help.


Two weeks from now, members of the Iraqi Parliament -- including Sunni, Kurdish and Shia leaders -- are planning to read Avaaz's petition of solidarity from the floor of Parliament. They say this statement of global support for Iraqi sovereignty will strengthen the resolve of their colleagues to face down Bush and big oil companies by opposing this law. So sign the petition today--let's make 100,000 voices heard in Iraq's Parliament before they vote:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/iraq_oil_law

Our simple message: we support Iraq's sovereign right to its own oil. Revenue from oil should be distributed fairly to the Iraqi people. And the Iraqi national parliament should decide this without foreign influence.

Oil accounts for 70% of Iraq's national income. The proposed oil law would give multinational companies broad control of those revenues for three decades -- a deal more generous than any in the Middle East. In most countries, oil corporations perform services under contracts with governments. In Iraq, foreign companies would sit on the national council that gives out the contracts.

Here's how the head of the Iraqi Federation of Oil Unions, Hassan Jum'a Awwad, put it:

"Iraq is passing through the most difficult of times, because all and sundry are hounding it and covet a share of its riches. Everyone knows that the oil law does not serve the Iraqi people, and that it serves Bush, his supporters and the foreign companies at their expense."

It's a rare sign of hope to see Iraqis coming together on anything, but this law is bad enough to unite almost everyone. Iraqis are asking for our help. Let's tell them the world supports their right to set their own future. Sign on and help us reach 100,000 voices before they present the petition to the Parliament:

http://www.avaaz.org/en/iraq_oil_law

In peace,

Ricken, Graziela, Paul and the Avaaz Team

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