The Swedish Iraqi Solidarity Committee (Svenskirakiska solidaritetskommittén, SISK) is a Swedish non-profit organisation founded in the year 2000 under the name Swedish Iraqi Committee against Economic Sanctions (SIES). The aim of the committee was to raise awareness of and create public opinion about the economic sanctions against Iraq, in force since 1993. Our standpoint was that the sanctions mainly hit the Iraqi civilians; 1.5 million people died because of the sanctions and the country’s economy, infrastructure, and social fabric were demolished. At the same time, the sanctions left dictator Saddam Hussein intact and even strengthened. Several conferences were organised by SIES to throw light on these issues, and regular manifestations were staged.
SIES also worked to raise awareness about weapons containing the radioactive and poisonous heavy metal "Depleted Uranium" (DU), which was used in the 1991 Gulf War on Iraq as well as in the intermittent bombings during the late 1990s. The poisoning of Iraq was causing a steep rise in the incidence of cancer and birth defects. SIES was trying to get the Swedish government to speak out against the use of these weapons and against the sanctions. Unfortunately the Swedish government did not listen and remained silent.
In 2003, when the sanctions were lifted because of the US invasion of Iraq, SIES changed its name to the Swedish Iraqi Solidarity Committee (SISK). SISK undertakes to:
- Work against the occupation of Iraq for a free and independent Iraq on the terms of
the Iraqi people
- Support peace, democracy, and human rights in Iraq
- Contribute to the reconstruction of Iraqi civil society through practical and economic support to Iraqi grassroots
development projects outside the official sphere
- Help educate the public with factual information on the situation in Iraq, and especially about DU-weapons
The first aim is being pursued in cooperation with "The Network against War", a Swedish umbrella organisation for peace-organisations. SISK has participated in demonstrations and in the distribution of leaflets, and contributed to the translation of information material on the war and occupation. The second and the third aims are pursued by supporting the Iraqi Women's League (IWL) and their children's libraries in Bagdhad. The fourth aim is carried out in cooperation with the Action Group against Radioactive Warfare (ARK), an organisation initiated by SISK members who are also active in the organisation.
SISK's registration number in Sweden is 802403-8146
All board members work on a strictly voluntary (non-paid) basis.
Marie Anell, President
Anita Lilburn, Vice President
Sofia Nilsson, Treasurer
Elise Rappe, Secretary
Noor Bahnam, Member of the Board
Widad Zaki, Auditor