Moscow welcomes resumed inspections in Iraq

Moscow welcomes the inspections in Iraq that have been resumed after a four-year break, said the Russian Foreign Ministry's official spokesman Alexander Yakovenko.

"The Russian party hopes that the inspections will become a landmark in the process of comprehensive Iraqi settlement, which will also allow to lift the sanctions from Baghdad and to transform the Persian Gulf region in a zone of lasting peace, stability and cooperation," the diplomat emphasised.

Only the conclusions by the UNMOVIC, the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission, and the IAEA "will give an exhaustive answer about the situation in Iraq in connection with prohibited programmes in the sphere of weapons of mass destruction and means for their delivery, and will remove the world community's anxiety about the matter," he believes.

Moscow hopes that the Iraqi authorities "will in practice confirm their readiness to constructively cooperate with the UN, as they have announced earlier, while the UNMOVIC and the IAEA will ensure the highly professional and impartial character of the inspections and monitoring, in strict compliance with their mandate, defined by the UN Security Council", Yakovenko pointed out.