Baghdad: UN must Take Iraqi Grievances into Account for Dialogue to Work
The ruling Baath party said Thursday that the United Nations must take Iraq's "legitimate" grievances into account when the two sides embark on a planned dialogue.
"The success of this dialogue depends above all on the readiness of the UN to understand the injustices of which Iraq has been a victim and to reply favorably to its rights and legitimate demands," said the party's mouthpiece, Ath-Thawra.
"Otherwise, this dialogue will lead nowhere," the paper warned.
It said Iraq was not sending a delegation to New York just "to hear the texts of (Security Council) resolutions that it knows already, but for a dialogue to find a way out of the current crisis which threatens the region's security and stability."
A solution would be "impossible if the injustices done to Iraq over the past 10 years and its legitimate rights are not taken into consideration."
Ath-Thawra said the dialogue with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan was "a show of goodwill and good intentions on the part of Iraq, which hopes to see serious action on the UN's part to put a halt to aggression and the embargo."
The two sides agreed in November to restore contacts, a year after a Security Council resolution -- rejected by Baghdad -- that offers a renewable suspension of sanctions in return for Iraqi cooperation with a new disarmament regime.
The talks were expected to take place in the first half of January but could now be put off until next month, according to the United Nations.
UN arms inspectors were pulled out of Baghdad in December 1998 on the eve of a US-British air war on Iraq for its alleged refusal to cooperate with a previous disarmament commission.
Baghdad, which has been under sanctions linked to its disarmament ever since its August 1990 invasion of Kuwait that was rolled back seven months later, has sworn not to allow the weapons inspectors to return -- BAGHDAD (AFP)
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