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Monday, 4 March, 2002, 22:31 GMT
MP wants Iraq 'threat' published
Jim Murphy
Mr Murphy: "We cannot wait for another atrocity"
A backbench Labour MP is calling on the government to publish evidence of the renewed threat to world security allegedly posed by Iraq.

If the evidence is as compelling as many of us fear then Iraq must act

Jim Murphy
Jim Murphy will tell MPs that Iraq remains a major threat to regional peace and international security.

"There are real concerns that Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction programme has been escalated.

"The UK should publish evidence of this renewed threat posed by Saddam.

"If the evidence is as compelling as many of us fear then Iraq must act," Mr Murphy said.

'Axis of evil'

His call follows moves at the weekend by Tony Blair to increase pressure on Saddam Hussein.

Mr Blair spoke of the importance of taking action against Iraq and other states which spread weapons of mass destruction.

He stopped short of endorsing US President George W Bush's characterisation of Iran, Iraq and North Korea as an "axis of evil".

But he praised the president's leadership since the terror attacks of 11 September, and said he was "absolutely right" to raise the weapons issue.

'Cease production'

MPs are due to debate Mr Murphy's call for Iraq to act on weapons of mass destruction in an adjournment debate later on Monday.

The Eastwood MP said: "Iraq must fulfil its responsibilities to the world.

"Either it acts or the time is fast approaching when the international community will have no alternative but to act.

"Iraq must end its support for terrorism and cease production of, and put beyond use, their weapons of mass destruction."

'Another atrocity'

He added: "Almost six months on from 11 September, we know what happens when the international community ignores states which harbour terror.

"We know that we cannot afford to wait for another atrocity before taking action.

"Saddam remains a threat to his own people and his neighbours.

"He has already used chemical weapons on his own people with devastating effects."

Mr Murphy will also demand that Syria and Iran act on terror groups which are causing so much violence in the Middle East.

Foreign Office minister Ben Bradshaw
"The international community has to do something"
Labour MP Alan Simpson
"The world needs an outbreak of diplomacy"
See also:

28 Feb 02 | UK Politics
Blair hints at Iraq action
25 Feb 02 | Middle East
Annan to tackle Iraq over arms
24 Feb 02 | Middle East
Blair and Bush 'to discuss Iraq action'
23 Feb 02 | Middle East
Saddam scorns Bush 'baby talk'
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