The group hunting for Iraq's weapons of mass destruction is unlikely to report that Saddam Hussein was no threat to the world, Tony Blair has said.
Blair: Would be surprised if Iraq intelligence wrong
The UK prime minister urged people to wait for the Iraq Survey Group's findings before rushing to judgement on the rights and wrongs of the Iraq war.
He said he would be surprised if the intelligence he received had been wrong
He was speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today ahead of Thursday's European, local and London mayoral polls.
Mr Blair has now arrived in Georgia for the G8 meeting of the world's most industrialised countries, where leaders will focus on the Middle East and Africa.
Earlier he admitted Iraq had been a major issue for voters he had met while out campaigning for the elections.
While he had to "live" with the decision to go to war with Iraq, Mr Blair said it was "nonsense" for people to suggest that Saddam Hussein and weapons of mass destruction were "just an invention of the CIA or British intelligence".
The security services "very rarely get wrong a whole development or pattern of intelligence", he told Radio 4's Today.
He was speaking after former chief US weapons inspector David Kay claimed weapons of mass destruction (WMD) did not exist in Iraq and it was "delusional" to think they would be found.
But Mr Blair said: "What he's also saying is that Saddam retained complete strategic intent to develop those weapons and was probably more of a threat than we thought he was at the time of the war.
"In respect of the weapons, I think we should let the Iraq Survey Group do its work.
"We know he had them because he used them and that's why we had 10 years of UN resolutions about Saddam and WMD."
But Mr Blair conceded: "What we also know is we haven't found them in Iraq - now let the survey group complete its work and give us the report...
"They will not report that there was no threat from Saddam, I don't believe."
Mr Blair said the reason the UK went to war with Iraq "was to enforce" UN resolutions calling on Saddam Hussein to disarm his WMD programmes.
He said that decision was based on security services' intelligence.
"The basic pattern, ie, this was someone who still retained complete determination to pursue this WMD business, I would be surprised if that turned out to be wrong," he said.
In his experience "they very rarely get a pattern wrong".
The UN Security Council on Tuesday evening unanimously passed a new resolution on the new arrangements for Iraq.
Mr Blair said after the 30 June handover of power there was no question that the "ultimate political decision making" would reside with the Iraqis.
Mr Blair also urged people to "be sensible" about calls by the UK Independence Party for Britain to pull out of Europe.
However, he accepted it was a "fair point" that under his leadership, more people since 1975 wanted to say "no" to the EU.
The need for a debate on this was one of the reasons why he changed his mind about having a referendum on the proposed European constitutional treaty, he said.
But Mr Blair asked: "Is it actually sensible, when 60% of our trade is with Europe, when millions of jobs are with Europe, for us ... to get out of it?
"Whatever happens in these European elections ... I think when you really face people with that choice then I think they understand it isn't very sensible."
Mr Blair also threw his weight behind Ken Livingstone, Labour's mayoral candidate for London and denied his support was "cynical".
"It's me who in a sense has had to eat some humble pie and say that someone I thought would be a disaster for London hasn't been a disaster," he said.