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Thursday, 6 February, 2003, 21:07 GMT
Iraqi rebuttal: Key points
Amer al-Saadi at the press conference in Baghdad
General Amer al-Saadi ridiculed the US dossier
These are the key points of the response by Iraqi presidential adviser Amer al-Saadi to allegations by US Secretary of State Colin Powell that Baghdad is not complying with UN resolutions.

Inspections:

  • General al-Saadi dismissed US charges that Iraq was not disarming, saying that all banned weapons programmes had already been dismantled and that inspectors did not find any "smoking gun". He said a detailed letter would be sent to the UN Security Council
  • The general dismissed charges that President Saddam Hussein ordered all banned weapons to be removed from palaces as "fictional", saying the palaces were inspected in 1998, and also after the inspections renewed last year.
  • Open in new window : Powell's report
    View the photographic evidence

  • He said he "would not grace with any comments" intercepted conversations which purported to show that Iraq was deliberately obstructing inspectors. He said the tapes "were unworthy of a superpower", adding that "one can fabricate anything".

  • Mr al-Saadi was scathing about charges that Iraq tried to overwhelm the UN inspectors with useless information. He said the UN resolution 1441 demanded Iraq "give full accurate and complete declaration", and that Baghdad had acted fully in accordance with it.
  • He said that in describing the Iraqi weapons declaration as "false", the US contradicted the chief arms inspector, Hans Blix. Mr al-Saadi said the US statement was "unworthy and fabricated".
  • Chemical, biological and nuclear weapons:

    US Secretary of State Colin Powell
    Powell said Iraq was in an "active and systematic" effort to defy the UN

  • The general said US charges about Iraqi mobile facilities for producing weapons were groundless, as they were based on the information provided by defectors. He said such "sources" had been found completely baseless by Unmovic and IAEA.
  • In response to the charges that Iraqi scientists had been told by the Iraqi president not to agree to be interviewed privately and outside Iraq, Mr al-Saadi said the inspectors had just begun interviewing one of the scientists privately.
  • Referring to charges that Iraq had failed to account for any of the biological and chemical warfare materials before inspections ended in 1998, Mr al-Saadi said Baghdad produced about 1,5 tonnes of VX gas in 1990, which had now deteriorated. He said this was proved by the Unscom inventory.
  • He said the accusations that recently discovered 122mm chemical warheads - described by the US as "tip of a submerged iceberg" - were groundless. The general said there was no "iceberg" and that Baghdad would submit a report to Mr Blix on Saturday.
  • Mr al-Saadi said the purpose of the US report to the Security Council on Wednesday was "mainly for home consumption for the uninformed, while at the same time undermining the competence of the IAEA and Unmovic in reaching a satisfactory conclusion".
  • Terrorism and human rights:


  • The general dismissed allegations that Iraq harboured an alleged terror group associated with al-Qaeda.
  • Abu Musab al-Zarqawi
    Abu Musab al-Zarqawi is alleged to have links to Baghdad

  • He said Baghdad had no links with an alleged al-Qaeda operative, Abu Musab Zarqawi, who was mentioned in the US report. "We do not know him, and we do not know about his whereabouts."
  • Mr al-Saadi dismissed allegations of human rights violations, saying the Iraqi Government was committed to enhancing human rights.
  • He also said that about 1.8 million Iraqi people died as a direct result of the international embargo.

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    See also:

    07 Feb 03 | Middle East
    07 Feb 03 | Middle East
    06 Feb 03 | Middle East
    05 Feb 03 | Middle East
    05 Feb 03 | Middle East
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