U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan is to blame for the failure of U.N.-Iraq talks on the return of arms inspectors to Baghdad, Iraq's most influential newspaper said on Monday.
"The secretary-general wanted to discuss one issue, the return of arms inspection teams, ignoring other related issues such as queries raised by Iraq," Babel newspaper said in a front-page editorial.
Iraq and the United Nations failed on Friday to reach an agreement to resume weapons inspections after intensive talks involving Annan and Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri.
The failure of the talks was "deliberate and went in line with the desire of the U.S. administration which wanted them to fail in order to achieve its vicious goals in Iraq," Babel wrote.
The deadlock is projected to encourage those in the Bush administration who prefer a military strike against Iraq.
For its part, Baghdad wanted the talks to tackle lifting 12-year-old crippling U.N. sanctions imposed on Iraq for its 1990 invasion of Kuwait.
Babel, managed by Saddam Hussein's son Uday, accused Annan of failing to provide answers to many of the questions Iraq submitted at the last talks in May, ranging from U.S. threats for a "regime change" in Baghdad to a timetable for the lifting of U.N. sanctions. (Albawaba.com)
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