[Homestead] U.N. Head Babbler and Do-Nothing Specialist Kofi Annan does eyeball-rolling bit agin

tvoivozhd tvoivozd at infionline.net
Thu Sep 16 13:17:08 EDT 2004

u-u--re---every Mud-Hut Magnate  and Tin-Pot Dictator (including Chirac 
and Kofi Annan) should dictate U.S. foreign policy---what could be more 


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  Britain, Australia reject Annan's claim of 'illegal' Iraq war



The Associated Press

September 16, 2004, 10:56 AM EDT

LONDON -- U.S. allies Britain and Australia on Thursday rejected a claim 
by U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan that the war in Iraq was "illegal" 
because Washington and its coalition partners never got Security Council 
backing for the invasion.

Prime Minister Tony Blair's official spokesman reminded reporters that 
Britain's attorney general, Lord Goldsmith, had found before the war 
that Britain was acting legally, citing three U.N. resolutions he said 
justified the use of force against the Saddam Hussein regime.

Britain was a leading supporter of the U.S.-led March 2003 invasion that 
ousted Saddam, which followed months of bitter debate in the 15-nation 
Security Council.

Australian Prime Minister John Howard -- a staunch U.S. supporter who 
defied widespread public anger to participate in the invasion -- also 
dismissed claims that the military action violated international law.

"There had been a series of Security Council resolutions and the advice 
we had (was) that it was entirely legal," Howard told Perth radio 
station 6PR.

Annan told British Broadcasting Corp. radio on Wednesday that the 
U.S.-led invasion did not conform to the United Nations charter.

The charter allows nations to take military action with Security Council 
approval, such as during the Korean War and the 1991 Gulf War.

But in 2003, in the buildup to the Iraq war, the United States dropped 
an attempt to get a Security Council resolution approving the invasion 
when it became clear it would not pass.

"I hope we do not see another Iraq-type operation for a long time -- 
without U.N. approval and much broader support from the international 
community," Annan told the BBC.

At the time, Annan had underlined the lack of legitimacy for a war 
without U.N. approval, saying: "If the United States and others were to 
go outside the Security Council and take unilateral action they would 
not be in conformity with the charter."

On Wednesday, after being asked three times whether the lack of council 
approval meant the war was illegal, Annan said: "From our point of view 
and the 1/8U.N. 3/8 charter point of view, it was illegal."

France, which led the opposition to the war, steered clear of the debate 

Asked to respond to Annan's comments, French Foreign Ministry spokesman 
Herve Ladsous said simply: "You know our position."

"We had the opportunity at the time to express ourselves very clearly," 
Ladsous said.

British Trade and Industry Secretary Patricia Hewitt said she also 
disagreed with Annan.

"There have always been different views on that matter and ... of course 
I respect his views on this matter and I regret that we disagree with 
them," Hewitt told BBC radio, adding the important thing now was to help 
Iraqis achieve "a safe, secure, democratic Iraq."

Japan's top government spokesman, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki 
Hosoda, said his country, also a U.S. supporter in Iraq, would seek 
clarification about Annan's remarks.

Annan also said that the wave of violence engulfing Iraq puts in doubt 
the national elections scheduled for January.

There could not be "credible elections if the security conditions 
continue as they are now," he told the BBC.

On Tuesday, Annan's top envoy to Iraq, Ashraf Jehangir Qazi, said the 
security situation will be the overriding factor in determining how many 
U.N. international staffers can return to Iraq. There is now a ceiling 
of 35 U.N. staff in the country.

Qazi spoke Tuesday at a Security Council meeting called to discuss 
Annan's latest report on Iraq, which warned that violence could make it 
more difficult to create the conditions for successful elections. Iraqi 
Prime Minister Ayad Allawi has said he is determined to hold the 
election by Jan. 31.

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, John Danforth, all but ruled 
out any delay beyond the Jan. 31 deadline for elections in Iraq's 
interim constitution.

"Let there be no doubt: We are committed to this timetable," he told 
council members Tuesday.

The Australian prime minister praised the humanitarian work of the 
United Nations but said the organization was too often "paralyzed" by 
the need for consensus among its members, pointing to the crisis in Sudan.

"The body is paralyzed. It is not doing much and the reason is you can't 
get agreement among the major powers," Howard said.

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