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Iraq: Official Says U.S., Britain Lying About Weapons

Kabul, 10 September 2002 (RFE/RL) -- Iraqi Vice President Taha Yassin Ramadan said today that the United States and Britain are lying about Iraq developing weapons of mass destruction to justify a military strike aimed at ousting President Saddam Hussein. In response to a potential attack, Ramadan called on all Arab citizens to strike "material and human interests of the aggressors wherever they are."

British Prime Minister Tony Blair told a gathering of British trade unionists today what will happen if Iraq ignores international demands to readmit UN weapons inspectors: "Let it be clear that there can be no more conditions, no more games, no more prevaricating, no more undermining of the UN's authority. And let it also be clear that should the will of the UN be ignored, action will follow."

In New York, Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov also repeated the need for weapons inspectors to return to Iraq.

European Commission President Romano Prodi today told a Portuguese radio station that he opposes a unilateral U.S. strike against Iraq. He advised the United States to seek UN Security Council support before taking action.

Iraqi officials yesterday took reporters on a tour of former nuclear sites to refute allegations that nuclear activities have resumed there.