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[casi] Blair refuses to implement timetable in UN SC Resolution 1284

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 Dowker                       Physics Department               +
+                                   Queen Mary, University of London +
+  E-mail:       Mile End Road,                   +
+  Phone:  +44-(0)20-7882-5047      London E1 4NS.                   +
+  Fax:    +44-(0)20-8981-9465                                       +
+  Homepage:          +

Subject: UK in material breach of UN Security Council Resolution 1284 on

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
See the Documents section.
Paragraph 7 sets out the timetable.

Yours sincerely
Fay Dowker

Letters to
Write to Alan Rusbridger, Guardian editor:


    Write to Simon Kelner, editor of the Independent:


    Write to Roger Alton, editor of the Observer:


    Write to Richard Sambrook, BBC director of news:


    Write to Jonathan Munro, head of ITN newsgathering:


    Write to BBC's Newsnight programme:


letters to

``Britain sets new tests for

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

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

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

C) letters to

``Britain backs
compromise in
desperate quest
for UN backing''

By David
Usborne in New

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

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

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

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 <>

Dear all

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
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'

(You can find out about the Franco-Russo-German
proposal at .)

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

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

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.

^—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

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