Igor Ivanov, the Russian Foreign Minister, today brought to the United Kingdom the message of his government with a loud and clear NO to war against Iraq.
Jack Straw, the British Foreign Secretary, who has followed the belligerent and bullying path blazed by the Bush administration, stated after his meeting with Igor Ivanov that he hoped the two countries would be able to reach agreement on how to manage the crisis in the Gulf.
However, there are fundamental differences of principle between the two positions. The Russian Federation supports the notion that the Third Millennium must begin necessarily with a viewpoint that war must be avoided at all costs, while the United Kingdom unfortunately follows a medieval, imperialistic and fascist stance, dictated by the USA, which considers that from time to time, a war is positive for national industries, to create jobs and to allocate contracts to crucial areas of the economy.
Britain and the USA are increasingly worried about the phrases coming from Moscow, namely that a motion for war in the UN Security Council will not be supported, neither will Russia abstain. This leaves one option: veto, an option which Igor Ivanov has hinted at in the past. "To abstain is a position that could not take place. Russia is not indifferent to the future of Iraq," he said
The Russian Federation considers that due to the fact that the UNMOVIC inspections teams are producing results and reducing tension in the region, they should be given more time to conclude their work, disarming Iraq in accordance with the UNSC resolutions, a position clearly followed by France, China and Germany, among other nations.
John ASHTEAD PRAVDA.Ru LONDON UNITED KINGDOM