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Monday, 10 June, 2002, 12:26 GMT 13:26 UK
Rumsfeld tells Kuwait to beware Iraq
US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in Kuwait International Airport
Mr Rumsfeld repeated the US wish to see Saddam gone
US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld has said he does not believe Iraqi statements that it does not have and is not seeking nuclear, biological or chemical weapons.

"They are lying," he said during a stopover in Kuwait on his European and Asian tour.


It would be like the lion inviting the chicken into the embrace

Donald Rumsfeld on Iraq's 'friendship offer'
He said a statement this weekend by Iraq that it had had no interest in weapons of mass destruction since the end of the Gulf War in 1991 was "false, not true, inaccurate and typical".

Iraq under the regime of Saddam Hussein remained a destabilising influence in the region, Mr Rumsfeld said, adding that he would advise Kuwait to be wary of reconciliatory moves that have been made.

'Worthless promises'

Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990 prompted the Gulf War but the two countries signed a bridge-building document earlier this year and Iraq has said it wants to normalise ties.

"What good in the past have the Iraqi representations of goodwill to their neighbours been? Precious little," Mr Rumsfeld said.

"If I were asked for my advice, it would be like the lion inviting the chicken into the embrace," he said.

The US has threatened Iraq with a military strike and Mr Rumsfeld also echoed President George W Bush's wish to see Saddam toppled from power.


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