28 Mar 2003

New Caledonians protest Australian involvement in Iraq war

10:18 am on 28 March 2003

An estimated 300 people in New Caledonia have marched in an anti-war protest which ended outside the Australian consulate in Noumea.

The march was called by the mainly Kanak USTKE union and joined by church and women's groups to protest against Australia's role in joining a pre-emptive attack on Iraq.

The union says Australia's actions don't augur well for the future of the Pacific.

It says if Australia is prepared to send troops for an attack in the Middle East one can imagine that Australia would have no probelm doing the same in the Pacific.

The Australian consul, Denise Fisher, who received a letter intended for prime minister John Howard, told the protestors that Australia was acting in Iraq in its national interest and is satisfied that UN resolutions provide a legal framework for its stand.