Iraq: Debate in UN Security Council

The UN Security Council began a debate yesterday among the 15 Members of the Security Council along with 48 other countries, one third of the 191 members of the UNO, to find a broad base for a resolution on action to be taken against Iraq, described by Kofi Annan as “the last chance” for Saddam Hussein to avoid war.

Annan called for the members to arrive at a unanimous conclusion, presenting a clear message to the Ba’ath regime on how the inspections on weapons of mass destruction are to be conducted. He declared that “nothing must stop the inspectors, this is all the Council asks for and it can adopt a new resolution which increases the manoeuvring space of the inspectors, so that there will be no ambiguity or weak point”.

He added that “The new measures should be firm, effective, credible and reasonable” and went on to warn that “if Iraq does not use this last chance and persists in its challenge, the Council will then have to face its responsibilities”. He declared that Iraq’s non-compliance with the UN Security Council Resolutions since 1991 “is one of the most serious situations which the international community has had to face”.

Meanwhile in Baghdad, the results of Tuesday’s elections have been released by Izzat Ibrahim, President of the Electoral Committee and number two in the Ba’ath regime. Saddam Hussein was re-elected President for another seven years, this time with 100% of the 11,445,636 votes having been cast in his favour.

Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru