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Amanpour: Reaction mixed in Europe

Amanpour]
Christiane Amanpour

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LONDON, England (CNN) -- Reaction to the news of the capture of former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein was mixed in European capitals Sunday. CNN chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour reported from London.

AMANPOUR: Well, as you can imagine, both the British and the other members of the coalition that went along with the United States in invading Iraq have come out with extremely positive and supportive statements.

What's interesting is that also France and Germany have done as well. Those are the two countries that stood very staunchly against the war in Iraq. Both countries, both leaders, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French President Jacques Chirac, coming out with very strong statements of support for the capture of Saddam Hussein.

Schroeder apparently sent a letter to President Bush congratulating him on the success of this mission. And both said they hoped that this would lead to further stability and democratization in Iraq.

There have also been, interestingly, congratulations from Afghanistan and a hope expressed there that the capture of Saddam Hussein may have some impact on the insurgency that's been growing in Afghanistan over the past several weeks.

On the other hand, Poland, which is a very firm ally of the U.S. and commands troops in Iraq right now, said it congratulates and welcomes this, but it warned that this is not the end of the violence. And it warned that there may be an upsurge in violence, or at least continuation of this guerrilla insurgency.

And certainly most of the people we've heard from and talked to are concerned that the insurgency be decapitated and are wondering whether or not the capture of Saddam Hussein will do that.

Maj. Gen. Raymond Odierno, head of the 4th Infantry Division, whose men captured Saddam Hussein, said that he did not anticipate necessarily that getting Saddam Hussein was going to have an immediate effect on damping down the insurgency, because he didn't think, he said, that it was coordinated nationally by Saddam Hussein.


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