Iraqi Envoy Arrives in Syria; Jordanian King Warns Against Attack on Iraq
The envoy of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein arrived in Damascus on Monday to seek the support of Syrian leaders against a threatened U.S. military campaign to topple the Baghdad regime.
Izzat Ibrahim, Vice Chairman of Iraq's Revolutionary Command Council, flew from Jordan where he held talks with King Abdullah on Sunday.
His visit came as U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney began a 12-nation tour to build support for extending the U.S.-led "war against terror" to Iraq, which Washington believes is developing weapons of mass destruction.
Jordan’s King Abdullah on Sunday warned that military action against Iraq would produce “catastrophic” consequences for the stability of the region and reiterated Jordan's rejection of the use of force against Baghdad, a Royal Court official said.
The King's remarks came during a meeting at the Royal Court with Izzat Ibrahim.
King Abdullah expressed hope that talks between Iraq and the UN will be resumed next month, forming a nucleus for a practical dialogue that could clear outstanding issues and finally lead to a complete lifting of sanctions on Iraq, the source said.
The King reasserted that Jordan rejects any tampering with Iraq's sovereignty and territorial integrity. He underlined the importance of Arab solidarity vis-ý-vis the Iraqi situation.
Ibrahim, who arrived in Jordan on Saturday as a special envoy of President Saddam Hussein, briefed the King on the outcome of talks between Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri and UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in New York on Thursday.
Ibrahim conveyed to the King President Saddam's appreciation of Jordan's stand in support of Iraq and the King's ongoing efforts to end the 12-year-old sanctions, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.
The meeting was attended by Jordan’s Prime Minister Ali Abul Ragheb, Royal Court Chief Fayez Tarawneh, and the Iraqi foreign minister.
On Saturday, Abul Ragheb and Ibrahim discussed bilateral relations in various fields, particularly economic and commercial cooperation.
Their talks also addressed the agenda of the Arab summit, which will convene in Beirut on March 27-28. Abul Ragheb stressed Jordan's support for Iraq.
Ibrahim's two-day visit here precedes a trip to Jordan this week by US Vice President Dick Cheney as part of a regional tour to discuss the US-led war on terrorism, amid fevered speculation that Iraq will be the next target of US military action following the campaign in Afghanistan. (Source: Reuters, Jordan Times)
© 2002 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)