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Rumsfeld Defends Iraq Intelligence

Washington, 4 February 2004 (RFE/RL) -- U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says there is no definitive proof that Iraq lacked weapons of mass destruction before the war.

Rumsfeld says former chief U.S. weapons expert David Kay neither proved nor disproved that Iraq possessed banned weapons. The issue of weapons of mass destruction was used as justification by Washington for going to war last year.

The Pentagon chief told a U.S. Senate panel today that it is too early to come to a final conclusion about what happened to Iraq's chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons programs.

Rumsfeld said the size of Iraq would make it easy for weapons to be hidden, recalling that it took 10 months to find ousted President Saddam Hussein.