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Globe and Mail - March 2003

Longshoremen in a New Brunswick port have declared that any military cargo destined for the Middle East is "hot cargo" and will refuse to move, load, or help ship the goods.

"We don't want to handle this port's cargo, or any cargo, intended for Iraq," said Patrick Riley, a spokesman for Local 273 of the International Longshoremen's Association in Saint John.

Mr. Riley said his membership believes any war on Iraq would be immoral.

"We have educated ourselves about what the issues are and we believe very strongly that we should take a strong stance against this war," he said.

The last time the Saint John longshoremen declared a "hot cargo" edict was in 1979.

At that time the longshoremen, along with their national counterparts, refused to handle any nuclear reactor parts destined for Chile, believing they would eventually be used to build that country's nuclear arsenal.

Mr. Riley said the current initiative was not being done in conjunction with any other port or longshoremen's local.