Lawmaker: Russia Will Veto ‘Smart’ Sanctions on Iraq
Russia will use its UN veto to reject the US-backed "smart" sanctions on Iraq proposed by Britain, Russian ultra-nationalist lawmaker Vladimir Zhirinovsky predicted Sunday on arrival in Baghdad.
"Russia will use its veto" during any vote at the United Nations on the US-British proposal to revamp of the 11-year-old sanctions regime imposed on Iraq, Zhirinovsky told reporters.
"If not, we will demand the resignation of the foreign minister (Igor Ivanov) because we cannot tolerate that he deceives parliament," warned Zhirinovsky, who is heading a delegation of 18 MPs and a group of businessmen and journalists.
The MP, who will meet with Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz, also called for the lifting of the sweeping embargo imposed on Iraq for invading Kuwait in 1990.
The right-wing deputy is a frequent visitor to Baghdad and has consistently advocated boosting relations with Iraq, a long-time Middle East ally of the former Soviet Union.
The United Nations is seeking to reach agreement on the US-British proposal to impose smart sanctions on Iraq before a deadline of July 3.
Russia, one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council, is opposed to the sanctions revision, which aims to ease trade with Iraq while strengthening controls of military goods and trying to end oil smuggling – BAGHDAD (AFP)