Iraq notes Russia's role in Baghdad's decision to readmit international inspectors

The Iraqi ambassador to Moscow, Abbas Khalaf Kunfud, has singled out Russia's role in Baghdad's decision to return international inspectors to the country. Speaking at a RIA Novosti news conference on Tuesday, the Iraqi diplomat said that "Russia's role was significant". He emphasised that Baghdad "has always heeded the advice" of Russian opposite numbers, "and they also heeded our position".

"The effect of Russian diplomacy was the greatest," Khalaf Kunfud acknowledged. In his opinion, the Russian side had carried out "considerable political and diplomatic work which resulted in Iraq's decision to readmit international inspectors". "We praise highly Russia's policy in this direction", the diplomat noted.

Khalaf Kunfud did not rule out that in the light of recent developments "at any moment now one can expect the arrival of an emissary of one or the other side", respectively to Baghdad or Moscow. But no concrete information is available as yet on this score, the ambassador said. In the meantime, he made the point, an exchange of views between Moscow and Baghdad "is proceeding at a brisk pace".

At the same time, according to him, Baghdad "also worked with other countries", including Arab League states and China

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