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Monday, 15 July, 2002, 01:18 GMT 02:18 UK
Iraq debates US threats
Iraqi National Assembly
No decisions but a lot of symbolism is expected

The Iraqi parliament is holding an extraordinary session on Monday to discuss the US threats against Iraq.

The meeting was decided last week and comes just over a week after the failure of talks between the UN and Iraq about the return of the arms inspectors to Baghdad.

Iraqi President Saddam Hussein
Saddam Hussein remains defiant on weapons inspectors
Since the talks broke down, there has been more and more talk about US plans for a military campaign against Iraq.

Despite hawkish statements out of Washington, the mood in Iraq remains defiant.

Last week, Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister, Tariq Aziz, said that his country was ready for war and that the US would fail to topple the Iraqi leadership.

No easy prey

Now the Iraqi parliament will be meeting on Monday to discuss the US threats.

But no groundbreaking statements should be expected from the body, which has little power.

The meeting is more of a symbolic gesture to show that the Iraqi people are united around their president and against the US.

Sunday marked the 44th anniversary of the revolution that put an end to the Iraqi monarchy, and the newspaper Al-Thawra used the occasion to write that Iraq would never return to any form of colonialism, whether British or American.

The editorial added that Washington and London were wrong if they thought that Iraq would be an easy prey.


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09 Jul 02 | Middle East
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