A committee representing feminist organizations has called on the Canadian government to choose peaceful solutions to international terrorism, and to bring the culprits of last month’s attacks to an international criminal court. The Canadian Women’s March Committee launched its Declaration against War and Racism the morning of October 4 on Parliament Hill. The declaration reads in part: “we are fiercely opposed to the vengeful and warmongering response that President Bush is proposing to the world, because it will inescapably cause the death of even more innocent victims.”

The women who made the announcement represented the National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC), the National Association of Women and the Law (NAWL), and the Fédération nationale des femmes canadiennes-françaises. Two rather skeptical male journalists questioned the women. The journalists focussed on comments made this week by former NAC president Sunera Thobani, who described American foreign policy as “soaked in blood.”

“We support Sunera’s right to broaden the discussion of this issue,” said NAC vice-president Denise Campbell. She said the committee has no comment on the phrasing of Thobani’s remarks.

“I would have expected this line of questioning from the media,” said Andrée Côté from NAWL after the press conference. But she said she expects more diverse reactions from the public, and says the committee’s stance is widely shared.

The declaration also stressed the need for women to take full part in efforts to make peace. The committee is asking women around the world to hold peace vigils October 5.