Former UN weapons inspector, Scott Ritter, on Monday called for sanctions against Iraq to be lifted.
Ritter, an American, who spent seven years in Iraq, said 22 million Iraqi people were suffering a "grievous humanitarian disaster on a daily basis" because of the sanctions, imposed after Iraq's 1990 invasion of Kuwait.
"The fact is Iraq no longer possesses these weapons of mass destruction," said Ritter, part of a UN team sent in to monitor Baghdad's chemical, biological and nuclear weapons.
He was speaking at the launch of the Great Britain-Iraq Society, a non-political organization working for peace and reconciliation between the two countries.
"It is time for the world body to do what is right, to do what is just," Ritter said.
The United Nations ordered its weapons inspectors out of Baghdad in December 1998 after Iraq was accused of reneging on its promise to co-operate with the inspections.
Shortly afterwards, the United States and Britain launched air strikes against Iraqi weapons facilities - BAGHDAD (AFP)
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