Due to French, Russian opposition, U.S. to revise Iraq resolution
U.N. action on Iraq will be delayed beyond next week's U.S. midterm elections as the Bush administration, in an attempt to gain French and Russian support, revises its resolution calling for new weapons inspections.
According to AP, a senior U.S. official said Thursday that the changes would reflect the views of Russia and France without altering the tough provisions demanded by the United States and Britain. These include declaring Iraq in "material breach" of its obligations under previous U.N. resolutions that ordered Baghdad to destroy its weapons of mass destruction and warning President Saddam Hussein that if he fails to get rid of such weapons, Iraq would suffer "serious consequences" — a diplomatic way of threatening war.
Russia and France object to the threat and want to defer action until U.N. weapons inspectors return to Iraq after a lapse of four years.
Revising the resolution could take a day or two, after which diplomats who have been negotiating at the United Nations for seven weeks would consult their capitals, said the official.
Secretary of State Colin Powell spoke with French and Russian leaders in an effort to produce a compromise UN Security Council resolution.
Meanwhile, the United States again warned its citizens not to travel to Iraq. In issuing the renewed travel warning, the State Department made no mention of possible impending military action against Iraq, but rather said there was a risk foreigners might be kidnapped there and that Baghdad had in the past used civilians as shields to protect against outside attack. (Albawaba.com)
© 2002 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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