Egypt’s President to Iraqi Counterpart: Cooperate with U.N. on Inspections
Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is strongly urging Iraqi President, Saddam Hussein, to resume cooperation with the United Nations over weapons inspections. This, he says, is to avoid a possible U.S. strike against it.
Speaking with a group of army officers on Saturday, the Egyptian President expressed the hope that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein would cooperate on implementation of United Nations resolutions, in order to avoid any alleged reason to be used against Baghdad.
However, Mubarak downplayed any possibility that Arab countries would be targeted by U.S. strikes, as part of Washington's global war against terrorism. The United States has said a wider war is possible and that it is carefully following Iraq.
However, on Saturday, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs William Burns commented that no decisions have been made regarding specific options and added that Washington plans to discuss the issue with its Gulf War allies. He made the comments during a visit to Kuwait, as part of a seven nation tour of the region.
Iraq has consistently refused to readmit UN weapons inspectors, who left the country some three years ago. U.S. President Bush has warned Baghdad to allow them back or face the consequences.
Iraq has been under international sanctions over its 1990 invasion of Kuwait. Iraq claims that it has no weapons of mass destruction and has called for a complete halt to the U.N. embargo imposed on the country. Baghdad also denies any connections to international terrorism, but is on Washington's list of states sponsoring terrorism. (Albawaba.com)
© 2002 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)