War in Iraq a crime, say legal experts
KUALA LUMPUR: Leaders of the United States, Britain and Australia are criminals who have committed crimes against humanity and should be hauled up and tried for war crimes, according to two law professors.
Prof Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi of Universiti Teknologi Mara Malaysia said George W. Bush, Tony Blair, John Howard and their accomplices had blatantly disregarded the laws of war.
He said the international community must file reports against them for genocide and crimes against humanity with the International Criminal Court for violating the Charter of the Nuremberg Tribunal.
"Terrorism is a crime against humanity and must be combated by concerted international action that examines causes as well as cures."
Prof Francis A. Boyle of Illinois University said Bush's attempt to assassinate the president of Iraq was an international crime in its own right.
"His administration’s war of aggression against Iraq also constituted a crime against peace as defined by the Nuremberg Charter, the Nuremberg Judgement and the Nuremberg Principles as well as by paragraph 498 of US Army Field Manual 27-10 (1956)," he added.
According to him, the US government's installation of the Interim Government of Iraq was nothing more than a "puppet government" under the laws of war.
"As the belligerent occupant of Iraq, the US government is free to establish a puppet government if it so desires. But under the laws of war, it remains fully accountable for the behaviour of its puppet government."
Prof Dr Shad said unlawful use of force by the US in Iraq threatened to "return us to a world in which the law of the jungle prevails over the rule of law."
This, he said, had potentially disastrous consequences for human rights not only for Iraqis but for the whole world. He suggested the United Nations General Assembly to pass a resolution to end the US occupation of Iraq and leave within a declared time frame.
"Iraqi government should have authority over its economy and oil revenues. It should have the right to set terms for the operation of foreign troops on its soil," he said.