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Showdown Iraq: Iraqi Parliament Member Discusses Vote

Aired November 12, 2002 - 12:06   ET


WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: We, of course, know how the Iraqi parliament voted. To find out why, let's go directly to one of its members. Mohammed Mudhaffar al-Adhami is joining us now live from Baghdad.
Mr. al-Adhami, thanks very much for joining us.

Why did you decide to vote against the United Nations Security Council resolution, even though basically the entire world, including the Arab League, wants Iraq to accept international inspections?

MOHAMMED MUDHAFFAR AL-ADHAMI, IRAQI PARLIAMENT MEMBER: Well, as a parliamentarian and from my point of view, I found this resolution is inapplicable, and it's very, very -- it's impossible to meet. It's unachievable actually. So, that's why it's unacceptable. It has neglected...

BLITZER: Why is it impossible to achieve? Sir, why is it impossible to achieve?

AL-ADHAMI: Because it has neglected all -- it has neglected all of the resolutions we dealt with since 1991.

You know, Iraq has dealt with the inspection committees for seven years and a half, and we are expecting that the sanctions would be lifted. And instead of that, we have to start now from the beginning, from zero, which is unfair, which is unacceptable by us.

BLITZER: If Iraq has nothing to hide -- if Iraq has nothing to hide, why not let these inspectors, Hans Blix, come in, let them get their job done over a few weeks or months...

AL-ADHAMI: We have -- we have accepted that.

BLITZER: ... and then you will have the sanctions lifted?

AL-ADHAMI: We have readmitted -- we have accepted everything. When there was negotiations with the United Nations, and we accepted their readmitting, and they were about to come. They're supposed to come on 19th of last month.

But what happened? The United States interfered and bring up this resolution -- this draft resolution, which is the world's worst resolution I have ever read, because it interferes in our internal affairs. How could we accept that planes come all over Iraq and fly anywhere and land anywhere? How could we expect -- how could we accept that men of -- security men could accompany those people who will come to inspect? We accepted...


BLITZER: But why do you believe -- Mr. Al-Adhami, execute me for interrupting. But why do you believe all of the Arab world at the Arab League Summit, the foreign ministers in Cairo, they urged Iraq to accept this resolution? And your foreign minister, Naji Sabri, indicated to them that your president, Saddam Hussein, would accept it.

AL-ADHAMI: I am talking from my point of view as a parliamentarian. I am telling that we have recommended the rejection of this resolution, and at the same time, we have authorized our president, Saddam Hussein, to take the ultimate decision -- the final decision. Because you know, the leadership knows very well it has got -- it has options, it has (UNINTELLIGIBLE), it has many informations. And the leadership will decide about that.

It was a recommendation made by the parliament, and we have expressed our views on this resolution.

BLITZER: Well, you make a good point, because as you know, our Jane Arraf, who's our Baghdad bureau chief, she said that despite the recommendation of the National Assembly, the parliament, the Revolutionary Command Council and Saddam Hussein would, by Friday, go ahead and accept this resolution, because the alternative, of course, would be the possibility of a U.S.-led war against Iraq.

AL-ADHAMI: It's too early to judge, but the war is there every day since 1991, the Americans are bombing us. And now they are threatening to launch a wide aggression against Iraq for no reason. Even before this resolution, they are threatening to launch an aggression, and we are expecting the aggression any time.

But at the same time, we are trying to avoid it by political and by diplomatic means. We don't want war. We don't like war. The American administration wants war. They want to occupy Iraq. They want to occupy our oil fields. They want to divide the area. They want to solve the Palestinian question for the benefit of the Israelis, but not for the benefit of the Palestinians and Arabs. This is the plan of the Americans.

They are not after the weapons of mass destruction. Why they didn't say anything about the Koreans when they proclaimed that they have nuclear weapons? Rumsfeld himself said in an interview (ph) on the CIA (ph) that they would leave it to the Japanese and the others. Why? Why only Iraq?

BLITZER: Mr. Al-Adhami...

AL-ADHAMI: Because the aim -- because the aim is to invade Iraq, and we will resist this invasion.

BLITZER: But the bottom line is that you would not be surprised if President Saddam Hussein accepted the U.N. Security Council's resolution, setting the stage for returning inspectors. AL-ADHAMI: Well, if the president accepts it, we will accept it. This is our leader, and he will decide, and whatever he will decide, we will accept it.

BLITZER: Mr. Al-Adhami, thanks for joining us from Baghdad.

AL-ADHAMI: Thank you.


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