News



Tracking Number:  200068

Title:  "US Official Says Saddam Hussein Lying About Weapons." State Department official Richard Clarke says that Saddam Hussein must stop lying and attempting to hide Iraq's nuclear, chemical and biological capabilities from UN inspectors. (911008)

Author:  JASPERSEN, M C (USIA STAFF WRITER)
Date:  19911008

Text:
*NEA212

10/08/91 *

U.S. OFFICIAL SAYS SADDAM HUSSEIN LYING ABOUT WEAPONS (Clarke says Iraq ignoring U.N. accords) (890) By M. C. Jaspersen USIA Staff Writer

Washington -- Assistant Secretary of State for Politico- Military Affairs Richard Clarke says that Saddam Hussein must stop lying and attempting to hide Iraq's nuclear, chemical, biological and missile capabilities from United Nations inspectors.

"All across the board, they've been lying, they've been hiding, they've been distorting, and they're attempting to maintain a residual weapons capability," Clarke said in an October 7 WorldNet television interview.

Clarke explained that Iraq is obligated to divulge its nuclear, chemical, biological and missile capabilities because "it agreed under U.N. (Security Council) Resolution 687 to allow this access by the United Nations."

"It agreed to turn over all of its documents; it agreed to destroy all of its (weapons) programs; and it's done none of that," Clarke said. He added that if Iraqis "complain about their sovereignty, they need to be reminded that they accepted the U.N. resolution as part of a cease-fire for a war that they lost."

Clarke said that Iraq had agreed to the United Nations Security Council's special resolutions stating the inspectors should have "unfettered access" to any site they deemed necessary to inspect, and that they should be permitted to use their own helicopters to reach the sites.

Instead, Clarke said, Iraq has blocked the U.N. team of special inspectors at every turn: "Weeks went by during which the Iraqis refused to comply with their resolution, refused to allow in helicopters; unfettered access was never achieved."

Clarke said that Iraq had insisted that it had not had a nuclear program, but that after the last U.N. inspection, "we know for sure that they had a nuclear weapons program, (and) that it was advanced."

He said that International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) analysts had found "clear, documentary evidence...of a very sophisticated, widespread nuclear weapons program, employing 12,000 scientists and engineers."

GE 2 nea212 Moreover, he added, the IAEA experts believe Iraq may have spent 20,000 million dollars on its efforts to obtain a nuclear capability. "They have over 3 dozen facilities spread out around the country. This is an enormous weapons program, and Iraq continues to deny that they even have a nuclear program," he added.

Now, Clarke said, most experts are certain that the Iraqis "were within a year of building a nuclear weapon when the war started."

Clarke said the United Nations inspections team has discovered the same pattern of non-compliance exists in the Iraqi chemical weapons field. "Inspections have already revealed that they had chemical weapons of an advanced type that they did not declare to the United Nations."

Furthermore, Clarke said, "They had many more weapons than they've declared, and we suspect that they have weapons hidden away throughout the country that they have not yet yielded up for destruction."

He said that Saddam Hussein also lied about Iraq's efforts to build missiles: "They said that they had eliminated all their missiles. And yet we know how many missiles they were procuring from the Russians...how many they used during the war, and how many we destroyed.

"That means" he added, "that there are between 200 and 300 more missiles still in Iraq, and they are hiding them and they are denying us access to them, and they are refusing to destroy them."

The expert said that Saddam Hussein had also attempted to hide his biological weapons effort by calling it a "medical program." When the U.N. inspection team reached the site of the "medical program," the Iraqis admitted that it was a biological weapons program, but claimed it was only "for defensive purposes."

"It's quite clear from the size of their effort that it was an offensive weapons program, and it's probably still out there," Clarke said.

When the inspectors were detained, Clarke said, it was "only when the United States and its allies began talking about taking additional steps, and only after an enormous effort in the United Nations, did they let the team go."

"So, this has been the pattern, throughout the work of the Special Commission. The Iraqis keep testing the limits of the U.N.'s patience, and they expect the U.N. and the world community to give in," Clarke said.

On the contrary, the official said, "everything they have done has only unified the world community in its opposition

GE 3 nea212 to Iraq and in the belief that we just have to keep up the pressure through economic sanctions."

Clarke stressed that the United States believes it is essential that the U.N. inspections team succeed in discovering, verifying and destroying the weapons capabilities of Iraq.

"If we can't make (international monitoring) work in Iraq, then there's no hope for nuclear non-proliferation to succeed elsewhere," he warned.

"We know that the Baghdad government, the Saddam Hussein government, will attack anyone. They attacked Arabs by invading a brother Arab state; they attacked the Persians in Iran; they attacked the Jews in Israel. There is every reason to believe that if that government were left in power, with weapons of mass destruction, that they would use them again," Clarke said. NNNN


File Identification:  10/08/91, NE-212; 10/09/91, NA-306
Product Name:  Wireless File
Product Code:  WF
Languages:  Arabic
Keywords:  IRAQ-US RELATIONS; CLARKE, RICHARD; NUCLEAR WEAPONS; INSPECTIONS; ARMS CONTROL VERIFICATION; HUSSEIN, SADDAM; IRAQ/Defense & Military; CHEMICAL & BIOLOGICAL WARFARE; UNITED NATIONS-SECURITY COUNCIL
Thematic Codes:  1NE; 1AC; 1UN
Target Areas:  NE
PDQ Text Link:  200068