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Last Updated: Saturday, 20 December 2003, 00:11 GMT
Libyan WMD: Tripoli's statement in full
Announcing its decision to abandon its weapons of mass destruction, Libya issued the following statement:
In view of the international environment that prevailed during the Cold War and the tension in the Middle East, the Great Socialist People's Libyan Arab Jamahiriyah (GSPLAJ) has urged the countries in the region to make the Middle East and Africa a region free of the weapons of mass destruction.

As its calls have received no serious response, the GSPLAJ had sought to develop its defence capabilities.

Colonel Muammar Gaddafi
Colonel Gaddafi wants other countries to follow suit

Libyan experts have conducted talks with experts from the US and the UK on GSPLAJ activities in this field.

The Libyan experts showed their (US and UK) counterparts the substances, equipment and programmes that could lead to production of internationally banned weapons.

These are centrifuging machine and equipment to carry chemical substances.

'Free will'

According to the talks held between the GSPLAJ, the USA and the UK, which are two permanent members of the (UN) Security Council that is responsible for the preservation of international peace and security, Libya has decided, with its own free will, to get rid of these substances, equipment and programmes and to be free from all internationally banned weapons.

By taking this initiative, (Libya) wants all countries to follow its steps, starting with the Middle East, without any exception or double standards.

Libya has also decided to restrict itself to missiles with a range that comply with the standards of the MTCR surveillance system.

It will take all these measures in a transparent way that could be proved, including accepting immediate international inspection.

'Double standards'

In addition to that, we confirm that (Libya) will abide by the Non-Proliferation Treaty, the IAEA Safeguards Agreement and the Biological Weapons Convention as well as accepting the Additional Protocol of the IAEA Safeguards Agreement and the Biological and Chemical Weapons Treaty.

GSPLAJ believes that the arms race will neither serve its security nor the region's security and contradicts its (Libya's) great concern for a world that enjoys peace and security.

By taking this initiative, it wants all countries to follow its steps, starting with the Middle East, without any exception or double standards.

Prime Minister Tony Blair
"This decision by Colonel Gaddafi... will make the region and the world more secure"

The BBC's Reeta Chakrabarti
"It looks like Libya will now be welcomed back into the international community"

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