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Iraq: Schroeder, Powell Call For Lifting UN Sanctions

Berlin, 16 May 2003 (RFE/RL) -- German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell today agreed that sanctions against Iraq should be lifted "as soon as possible." Schroeder said after talking with Powell at the Chancellery in Berlin that sanctions "no longer make sense in light of developments."

Powell said he was "pleased" with Schroeder's willingness to move on the sanctions which had been imposed by the UN against the toppled government of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.

"We are working together on finding a formulation for a resolution [on lifting Iraqi sanctions] at the United Nations that will draw the support of all members of the Security Council, and I was pleased at the chancellor's commitment to move as quickly as we can to lift sanctions entirely, so that we can begin to have the flow of oil, which will generate revenue that will benefit the Iraqi people," Powell said.

Powell said the talks were "open and candid" as the two men discussed "disagreements of the past" months and Germany's opposition to the war in Iraq. Powell said the talks also dealt with the prospects for peace in the Middle East as well as the war against terrorism.

Later today, Powell is to meet German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer.