An Iraqi opposition coalition said Sunday it would work with the new US administration of president-elect George W. Bush and his Gulf War team to overthrow Saddam Hussein.
"We want to cooperate more closely with the new administration ... to overthrow the regime of (President) Saddam Hussein and establish democracy in Iraq," said a spokesman for the Iraqi National Congress (INC).
Sharif Ali bin al-Hussein, quoted by the Arab newspaper Al-Hayat, said the London-based INC was "optimistic" that the Bush administration would deliver on a US pledge of 97 million dollars to support the opposition.
In October, Washington announced an initial allocation of four million dollars to the INC to finance its humanitarian and information activities.
Bush, who is to take office in January, on Saturday nominated Gulf War hero and former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, retired General Colin Powell, as his secretary of state.
Powell, taking his place in a team that also includes vice president-elect Dick Cheney, who was defence secretary during the war that evicted Iraqi troops from Kuwait, promptly delivered a blunt warning to Iraq's leadership.
"Saddam Hussein is sitting on a failed regime that is not going to be around in a few years' time," he said. "The world is going to leave him behind, and that regime behind."
"I don't know what it will take to bring him (Saddam) to his senses, but we are in the strong position, he is in the weak position," Powell said -- DUBAI (AFP)
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