Skip to comments.UPDATE 2-Russia unhappy with draft UN text on Iraq-reports
Posted on 09/29/2002 11:31:40 AM PDT by kattracks
MOSCOW, Sept 29 (Reuters) - Russian news agencies quoted informed sources as saying on Sunday Russia was unhappy with a proposed U.S.-sponsored U.N. resolution setting down tough terms to Iraq on disarming because it could not be implemented.
A report issued by Interfax news agency, a day after Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov discussed the resolution with a top U.S. envoy, said officials were unhappy with its terms setting strict deadlines for Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.
The sources described experts in Moscow as "disappointed" with the text, saying: "In its current form, this resolution cannot be implemented by its very nature."
Britain backs the draft, but the other three permanent members of the Security Council with veto powers -- Russia, France and China -- all have serious reservations.
Itar-Tass quoted a well-informed source as saying U.S. Undersecretary of State Marc Grossman had been unable to convince Russia to change its position.
"The text of the draft is very tough and raises a lot of questions, and even though the Americans had constructive proposals, they failed to convince Russia that a new resolution is needed," the source told Tass.
But the source said "consultations will continue in New York in the near future".
Ivanov made no comment on the resolution after his talks with Grossman, but restated Russia's position that it wanted the fastest possible return to Iraq of inspectors to check its weapons' stocks.
Ivanov said the text of the draft Security Council resolution was being discussed with U.S. and British officials.
Russia, hoping eventually to take advantage of lucrative oil deals in Iraq, sees the inspectors' return as an initial step to lifting sanctions imposed on Baghdad for its 1990 invasion of Kuwait.
President Vladimir Putin and Ivanov have both said that no new resolutions are needed in order for the monitors to resume work stopped in 1998.
Iraq has denounced the U.S.-drafted resolution, which gives Iraq a week to accept demands to disarm and 30 days to declare all its weapons of mass destruction programmes. ((Moscow newsroom, +7 095 941 8520, firstname.lastname@example.org))
© Reuters Limited.
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