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Dear Listmembers, Apologies for posting on this issue again but with all the media coverage of the ``compromise'' UN resolution being tabled I think it is worth continuing to press the press on this. If enough of us write we can embarrass them into covering it. This post includes (A) My letter on the issue to various news editors and email addresses to send a message to. (B) article from today's Guardian (responses today if possible) (C) article from today's Independent (ditto) (D) Milan Rai's original message (which I posted before) best wishes, Fay ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ + Fay Dowker Physics Department + + Queen Mary, University of London + + E-mail: email@example.com Mile End Road, + + Phone: +44-(0)20-7882-5047 London E1 4NS. + + Fax: +44-(0)20-8981-9465 + + Homepage: http://monopole.ph.qmw.ac.uk/~dowker/home.html + ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ A) To: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: UK in material breach of UN Security Council Resolution 1284 on Iraq Dear Newsnight Editors, There already exists a UN mandated deadline for Iraqi compliance with disarmament. UN Security Council Resolution, 1284, which requires that by March 27th Iraq be set a list of ``key disarmament tasks'', that these be spelled out ``clearly and precisely'' and that 120 days later is the deadline that compliance with these tasks is to be judged. This timetable for inspections is an explicit requirement of a UN resolution tabled and championed by the UK. Please ask Mr Blair and Mr Straw why they refuse to implement it. The UN resolution in question can be found at http://www.un.org/Depts/unmovic/ See the Documents section. Paragraph 7 sets out the timetable. Yours sincerely Fay Dowker Letters to Write to Alan Rusbridger, Guardian editor: Email: email@example.com Write to Simon Kelner, editor of the Independent: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Write to Roger Alton, editor of the Observer: Email: email@example.com Write to Richard Sambrook, BBC director of news: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Write to Jonathan Munro, head of ITN newsgathering: Email: email@example.com Write to BBC's Newsnight programme: Email: firstname.lastname@example.org B) letters to email@example.com ``Britain sets new tests for Saddam'' Ewen MacAskill, Julian Borger in Washington and Gary Younge in New York Tuesday March 11, 2003 The Guardian The British government last night circulated a new compromise at the United Nations setting out a dozen disarmament tests that the Iraqi president, Saddam Hussein, would have to pass to avoid war. A security council source said the UK was opting for a list that was "simple, striking and snappy" to win over wavering voters on the security council for a resolution that would set down a deadline for the tests. The compromise, designed to break the deadlock gripping the UN security council and paralysing Washington's war plans, would see the deadline pushed back "by a few days" from the March 17 ultimatum proposed by London last week. The government claims it has the support of the US for the revised plan. Furthermore, according to the British arithmetic, Angola, Cameroon, and Mexico are in favour and Guinea, Pakistan and Chile are also coming round. Chile has proved to be one of the most awkward but it too is shifting towards the US-British position, according to British sources. Tony Blair phoned the Chilean president on Sunday to stress that the new resolution will take account of Chile's concerns. Diplomats from the "middle six" members confirmed they were holding discussions among themselves and were open to such a compromise. "There are some initiatives which are under way, and we are party to these initiatives," Angola's UN ambassador, Ismael Gaspar Martins, told reporters. "As it is, I think we can still do some more about that resolution. I think everybody accepts that, including the sponsors of the resolution." The list demands that Iraqi scientists be taken out of the country for interviews abroad where they will be free from intimidation, the destruction of banned weapons and the provision of documents explaining what had happened to the remainder. A British source said the US and Britain were "quietly confident" that the compromise will secure the votes of the six key undecided countries on the 15-member security council. The British ambassador to the United Nations, Sir Jeremy Greenstock, spent yesterday sounding out the undecided countries about their remaining concerns and then drew up the fresh set of proposals. If Sir Jeremy wins support for the new compromise, it could be put to a vote either tomorrow or Thursday. If and when Britain and the US put forward a resolution, they will have to contend with the growing danger that France will lead opposition and scupper the plan. President Jacques Chirac yesterday made his first explicit threat that he would wield the veto. "War can only lead to the development of terrorism," he said. "The war will break up the international coalition against terrorism." The victors of any war would be "those who want a clash of civilisations, cultures and religions". With relations between Britain and France becoming increasingly strained, the British government said yesterday that it expected France and probably Russia to use their vetos. Russia said yester day that it would veto the resolution in its present form. The stakes involved in the decision were dramatically raised yesterday by the UN secretary general, Kofi Annan, when he explicitly warned the Bush administration that it would be violating the UN charter if it went ahead with the invasion of Iraq without security council endorsement. The UN charter forbids military action against other member states unless the action is in self-defence or condoned by the security council. US and British officials are also furious with the chief UN inspector, Hans Blix, for failing to mention what they see as damning evidence discovered by his inspectors of an undeclared drone aircraft and cluster bombs designed to scatter chemical and biological agents. The weapons were instead listed in a written UN working document and a last-minute addendum handed to council members after his verbal report last Friday. British and US officials insisted Mr Blix attend a security council meeting last night to answer their questions. According to the working document, Unmovic, the monitoring team, found part of a bomblet designed for chemical and biological agents last month in the Al Noaman munitions factory. "Iraq stated that this was a leftover from the past declared chemical simulant test programme that was abandoned," the report notes, but it adds that the evidence suggests "Iraq's interest in cluster munitions, and the developments it did make, may have progressed well beyond what it had declared." C) letters to firstname.lastname@example.org ``Britain backs compromise in desperate quest for UN backing'' By David Usborne in New York 11 March 2003 Britain and the United States delayed the UN vote on a resolution to give Saddam Hussein an ultimatum to disarm, as British diplomats suggested compromise proposals to try to win support from Security Council members who oppose a rush to war. During a private council meeting early today, diplomats said Britain's UN Ambassador Jeremy Greenstock suggested a two-phase approach to the draft resolution. Under the proposal, Saddam would have 10 days to prove that Iraq has taken a "strategic decision" to disarm, which could be done with a series of tests or "benchmarks" . If Iraq makes that decision, a second phase would begin with more time to verify Iraq's full disarmament, the diplomats said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "There is a two-stage process," Mr Greenstock said. "One is to be convinced that Iraq is cooperating, the other is to disarm Iraq completely." Security Council ambassadors said Britain made clear that the timeline would still be the end of March — meaning that the most time Iraq could hope to get would be about two weeks if the resolution passed this week. The meeting came as a row erupted over revelations in a new 173-page report by the chief weapons inspector, Hans Blix, last Friday that his teams recently uncovered a large unmanned aircraft, or drone, that could be capable of spraying biological or chemical agents. The United States was expected to challenge Mr Blix on the drone issue. His report, which gives a history of Iraq's weapons programmes over decades, also raises alarm bells on numerous fronts, including fears that President Saddam may still have quantities of anthrax and VX as well as cluster bombs able to disperse them. The latest manoeuvres reflect deep anxiety in London that it still does not have sufficient support for a new resolution. The addition of benchmark tests for President Saddam might help win over the six wavering Council states but it is unlikely to impress those firmly opposed to it, including those countries wielding a veto: France, Russia and China. However, Washington is likely to resist the suggestion of specific demands or changing the deadline, exposing a breach between the British and American positions. The White House fears that setting the tests may allow Iraq to spin out the process and continue to divide the Council. Britain and the US are angry that at his briefing to the Security Council last week, Mr Blix failed to speak explicitly of the discovered drone. Tony Blair, telephoned Mr Blix last night and raised the drone question. Aides to Mr Blix insisted, however, that the Swede had made a clear reference to the aircraft and that UN members were provided simultaneously with the report, including the pages where it is discussed. The report states in its early pages that "recent inspections have also revealed the existence of a drone with a wingspan of 7.45 metres that has not been declared by Iraq". The US is expected to argue that this is precisely the kind of "smoking gun" it has been waiting for to justify war. It will try to persuade wavering countries that the drone's discovery should be enough for them to support a new resolution. Officials close to Mr Blix also confirmed that inspectors had recently found a number of items that could represent an effort by Iraq to develop cluster bombs for the dispersal of chemical or biological materials. The new report notes that the UN inspectors found a "component of a 122mm [chemical/biological warfare] cluster submunition in a warehouse" last month. The report says: "The foregoing suggests that Iraq's interest in cluster munitions, and the developments it did make, may have progressed well beyond what it had declared." On anthrax, the report is even more ominous. "The strong presumption is that about 10,000 litres of anthrax were not destroyed and may still exist". It adds that Iraq "currently possesses the technology and materials," including fermenters, bacterial growth media and seed stock, to produce anthrax. D) Date: Thu, 06 Mar 2003 09:28:05 -0000 From: Milan Rai <email@example.com> Dear all A GOLDEN OPPORTUNITY TO STOP THE WAR As a result of the Turkish anti-war movement's victory in forcing the Turkish parliament to derail the US 'northern strategy' for war on Iraq, it is widely predicted that the war timetable has slipped back by at least a week to somewhere around 1 April. The significance of this is that UN weapons inspectors are supposed to present to the Security Council, and the Security Council is supposed to agree, a 'work programme' for the inspectors by 27 March. This 'work programme' is supposed to include a set of 'key disarmament tasks', defining 'clearly and precisely' what Iraq has to do to satisfy the world that it has disarmed. This is required by paragraph 7 of UN Security Council Resolution 1284. You can find this at http://www.un.org/Depts/unmovic/ See the Documents section. In other words, by 27 March the Security Council is supposed to START the process of verifiable disarmament. If this happens, it will be, as far as I can see, politically *impossible* for the US to go to war in the next few weeks, therefore putting off the war timetable for some time, and giving us a chance to derail it completely. That's why the US has done its best to fend off and bury the 'key disarmament tasks' aspect of the inspectors work, refusing to support a French proposal to 'speed up' this aspect of the inspectors' work. (You can find out about the Franco-Russo-German proposal at http://www.un.int/france/ .) FOUR MONTHS' DELAY One of the difficult aspects of all this for the US and UK is that Resolution 1284 requires that the inspection/key disarmament tasks process then go on for 120 days to see whether Iraq is complying, and at that point all economic sanctions on Iraq could be 'suspended'. So there is an expectation built into the process laid down by Resolution 1284 (a Resolution proposed and championed by the UK) that inspections go on for at least FOUR WHOLE MONTHS after 27 March. IRAQ HAS NOT YET BEEN TESTED The draft resolution put to the Security Council by the US and UK says only that 'Iraq has failed to take the final opportunity afforded to it by resolution 1441'. How can Iraq 'fail' this test when the UN Security Council has not yet drawn up the examination paper, or presented it to those being tested, or set a deadline for the examination to be over? The 'key disarmament tasks' are also 'key anti-war tasks' for the peace movement. We must press our MPs to champion the process set out in Resolution 1284 and to force the UK and US governments to allow the definition of the 'key disarmament tasks' by 27 March. It is entirely predictable that Washington and London will do all they can to sink the inspection process, and the definition of the 'work programme' in particular. We must not let them get away with it. Please write to/call up the media, write to/call up your elected representatives and bring the 'key disarmament tasks' into public view. WHAT THE BRITISH PEOPLE THINK ^—The advice proffered by a large majority of Britons to Mr Blair is thus clear. He should not continue ^”to make active preparations for launching an early military assault on Iraq^‘ (32 per cent of British people). Rather, he should inform the Bush administration ^”that he lacks the necessary public support for war in the UK, and the US will therefore either have to go it alone or else give the UN weapons inspectors more time to complete their work^‘ (63 per cent).^“ (Telegraph, 19 Feb., p. 4) Best wishes Milan Rai author War Plan Iraq in a personal capacity www.justicenotvengeance.org _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email firstname.lastname@example.org All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk