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Keep the pressure on Iraqi breakthrough

Wayne Mapp National Foreign Affairs Spokesperson

17 September 2002

Keep the pressure on Iraqi breakthrough

The decision by Iraq to readmit weapons inspectors without conditions will be welcomed by New Zealanders - but the international community must not loosen its firm grip, says National's Foreign Affairs spokesman, Wayne Mapp.

"This means New Zealand must be willing to play a part in ensuring Iraq continues to comply with UN resolutions.

"There is absolutely no doubt that Iraq would not have made the decision unless faced with the serious risk of military force being used to make it comply. But given its track record for openly defying the international community, the pressure must be kept on.

"Iraq has flouted 16 UN resolutions for over four years and has undoubtedly been continuing its development of weapons of mass destruction. It had a clear choice - either comply with the resolutions or risk invasion to destroy the threat.

"International law must be seen to be backed by a willingness to enforce UN resolutions. It is no different to our own community where a police force is bound to guarantee the law is enforced," says Dr Mapp.

Ends

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