U.N. observers stop operations along Iraq-Kuwait border
U.N. observers monitoring the Iraq-Kuwait border said on Monday they had stopped all operations in the demilitarized zone amid U.S.-led preparations for an attack on Iraq.
"Effective today, we have ceased all operations under... our security plan," Daljeet Bagga, spokesman of the U.N. Iraq-Kuwait Observer Mission (UNIKOM), told Reuters.
"We are still here in the DMZ (demilitarized zone), but we have ceased operations and are awaiting further instruction," he said.
The United States, Britain and Spain on Monday were close to abandoning efforts to gain international approval for military action unless the U.N. Security Council immediately backed a resolution on the use of force.
Under UNIKOM's security planning, the next phase to wind down operations in the event of war would be a withdrawal from the DMZ to Kuwait City. Bagga said no decision had been made on that step.
UNIKOM was established in April 1991 following the withdrawal of Iraqi forces from Kuwait. Its task is to monitor the demilitarized zone along the Iraq-Kuwait border, deter border violations and report on any hostile action. (Albawaba.com)
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