U.S. may not seek Security Council vote; Report: U.N. has post-Saddam plans for Iraq
The Bush administration left open the possibility Tuesday that it would not seek a United Nations vote on its war-making resolution if the measure was clearly headed for defeat.
One option under serious consideration was Bush giving Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein a final ultimatum, perhaps with a short-term deadline, in an address next week, two senior White House officials said, according to AP.
The officials stressed that a variety of options are on the table and all depend on the outcome of a U.N. Security Council debate on the U.S.-backed war resolution. In a new development, Russia's top diplomat said Moscow may use its veto against the measure.
Secretary of State Colin Powell, in an interview with RTL television of Germany, said that early next week U.S. leaders would "make a judgment on whether it's time to put the resolution up to a vote." But he also said the United States was inclined to push for a vote "in the absence of compliance on the part of Saddam Hussein."
At the White House, spokesman Ari Fleischer said, "The vote is desirable. It is not necessary."
Meanwhile, the United Nations has drawn up a confidential plan to establish a government in Iraq after the downfall of President Saddam Hussein's regime, The Times reported.
The British newspaper said Wednesday that the move suggested UN leaders now considered war all but inevitable.
The Times said it had obtained a copy of the plan, which it reported had been produced over the past month.
According to the newspaper, the 60-page plan was ordered by Louise Frechette, the Canadian deputy of Kofi Annan, the UN secretary general, and was drawn up in New York by a six-member pre-planning group, according to The Times.
It expected the UN stepping in about three months after a U.S. conquest of Iraq, and steering the country towards self-government.
The document said that the UN should avoid taking direct control of Iraqi oil or becoming involved in vetting Iraqi officials for links to Saddam, or staging elections under US military occupation. (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)
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