STATE OF THE DEBATE WITHIN THE SECURITY COUNCIL
The five permanent and 10 elected members of the United Nations Security Council are considering a second resolution that would find Iraq still in violation of its disarmament demands and would likely pave the way for a military assault on the Middle Eastern nation. A resolution requires a "super majority" of nine votes to pass. If any of the permanent members (U.S., Britain, France, China and Russia) vote "no" on a resolution it is automatically vetoed.
The following are the official and widely reported positions of the 15 countries as of March 14, 2003.
On March 11, President Jiang Zemin told U.S. President George W. Bush by telephone that the current resolution, 1441, is fine and that there was "no need for any new resolution."
China has not commented on the British compromise.
"We cannot accept the British proposals insofar as they are part of a logic of war, a logic of automatic recourse to war," said French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin.
"Should we go to war to preserve the unity of the international community? What surprising reasoning!" he said on French television on March 14. "That's a hasty rush that seems dangerous to me."
"Russia believes that there is no need now for any additional resolutions of the U.N. Security Council, and therefore Russia has openly announced that, if the draft resolution, which has been submitted today for consideration and which contains unfulfillable ultimatum demands, is put to vote after all, Russia will vote against that resolution," Igor Ivanov, Russian foreign minister, said on March 10.
Despite its compromise proposal, the British government has clearly declared that Iraq must be disarmed, either through inspections or by force.
"What is at stake here is not whether the United States goes alone or not, it is whether the international community is prepared to back up the clear instruction it gave to Saddam Hussein with the necessary action," British Prime Minister Tony Blair said. "The best thing is to go flat-out for that second resolution."
"Saddam Hussein has a long history of reckless aggression and terrible crimes," Mr. Bush said. "He possesses weapons of terror. He provides funding and training and safe haven to terrorists -- terrorists who would willingly use weapons of mass destruction against America and other peace-loving countries. Saddam Hussein and his weapons are a direct threat to this country, to our people, and to all free people."
MEMBERS OF THE SECURITY COUNCIL
"We are not forming a united African front," Martins told reporters, "We are trying to reach a consensus within a group of six countries to be able to act and assist in creating a consensus that we need of the council, not just of the six."
"No matter how serious this crisis is, I certainly don't think it's worth dividing [Europe from the U.S.]," Prime Minister Simeon Sexe-Coburg Gota has said.
President Bush and Secretary Powell have lobbied Chilean leaders, but the Andean nation has not committed either way on the second resolution proposed by the U.S. and Britain.
"A conflict not sanctioned by the United Nations would be a dreadfully negative thing," Chilean President Ricardo Lagos said.
At the U.N. Security Council meeting on March 7, the permanent representative of Cameroon to the U.N., Martin Belinga-Eboutou, said "we must together seek, in good faith, a credible alternative to war and to endless inspections."
German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder campaigned for re-election late last year on a anti-Iraq war platform and has been a staunch opponent to any regime change in Baghdad.
"With an extended inspection regime, we can achieve a lasting and verifiable disarmament and that is why it was and remains right that we have insisted on the logic of peace rather than entering into a logic of war," German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder told the German parliament in a state of the nation address on March 14.
"Guinea may opt for abstention. The United States has already made it clear that an abstention would be tantamount to voting against the resolution," Radio Guinea International reported on March 13.
Foreign Affairs Minister Luis Ernesto Derbez Bautista said on March 13 that Mexico continues to work with other member nations to find the best way to peacefully disarm Iraq. He added that the Mexican government is hesitant to approve the second resolution because it lacks support from the international community.
President Vicente Fox outlined his view on March 12, saying, "We continue our country's great effort to achieve peace while also winning Iraq's disarmament... Mexico's voice is being heard around the world ... our commitment is to resolving the Iraq conflict peacefully."
"It would be very difficult for Pakistan to support war against Iraq," he said. "This goes against the interests of my nation and my government." Jamali did not specifically mention how Pakistan plans to vote on the resolution.
However, news organizations - including the Associated Press, Reuters and London's Financial Times newspaper - have widely reported that Pakistan will abstain from the U.N. vote.
"I will not resign myself to the United Nations Security Council showing itself to be incapable of complying with resolutions it was capable of passing unanimously," Prime Minister Jese Maria Aznar. "We are working... so that the Security Council maintains its respect, its credibility and that it be a guarantor for peace and world security."
Syria is opposed to military action against Baghdad and is expected to vote against a second resolution that would set up a timetable for war.
"[W]hile inspectors are achieving tangible progress in implementing Security Council Resolution 1441, we believe that any individual or any state can ask why insist on adopting a new resolution allowing the use of military force as if war were the best and not the worst option," Farouk al-Shara, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Syrian Arab Republic, said during March 7 meeting of the U.N. Security Council.
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