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Did the US unload WMD's in Iraq last week?

MEDIA NOTE: Did the US unload WMD's in Iraq last week?

The article below in the Tehran Times (13 March) leaves me wondering whether any of the Australian media organisations has 1) spotted it, 2) reported this and/or 3) conducted further investigations into this matter. Tehran Times claims that shipments of WMD's have been unloaded while the country looked the other way at the time of the signing of the Interim Constitution - and the informer according to Mehr News Agency is a member of the Iraqi Governing Council.

U.S. Unloading WMD in Iraq

Tehran Times
13 March 2004

TEHRAN (Mehr News Agency) – Over the past few days, in the wake of the bombings in Karbala and the ideological disputes that delayed the signing of Iraq’s interim constitution, there have been reports that U.S. forces have unloaded a large cargo of parts for constructing long-range missiles and weapons of mass destruction (WMD) in the southern ports of Iraq.

A reliable source from the Iraqi Governing Council, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Mehr News Agency that U.S. forces, with the help of British forces stationed in southern Iraq, had made extensive efforts to conceal their actions.

He added that the cargo was unloaded during the night as attention was still focused on the aftermath of the deadly bombings in Karbala and the signing of Iraq’s interim constitution.

The source said that in order to avoid suspicion, ordinary cargo ships were used to download the cargo, which consisted of weapons produced in the 1980s and 1990s.

He mentioned the fact that the United States had facilitated Iraq’s WMD program during the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq and said that some of the weapons being downloaded are similar to those weapons, although international inspectors had announced Saddam Hussein’s Baath regime had destroyed all its WMD.

The source went on to say that the rest of the weapons were probably transferred in vans to an unknown location somewhere in the vicinity of Basra overnight.

“Most of these weapons are of Eastern European origin and some parts are from the former Soviet Union and the Eastern Bloc. The U.S. obtained them through confiscations during sales of banned arms over the past two decades,” he said.

This action comes as certain U.S. and Western officials have been pointing out the fact that no weapons of mass destruction have been discovered in Iraq and the issue of Saddam’s trial begins to take center stage.

In addition, former chief UN weapons inspector Hans Blix has emphasized that the U.S. and British intelligence agencies issued false reports on Iraq leading to the U.S. attack.

Meanwhile, the suspicious death of weapons inspector David Kelly is also an unresolved issue in Britain.

'Occupation Forces Official Claims to Have No Information About Transfer of WMD to Iraq'

A security official for the coalition forces in Iraq said that he has not received any information about the unloading of weapons of mass destruction in ports in southern Iraq.

Shane Wolf told the Mehr News Agency that the occupation forces have received no reports on such events, but said he hoped that the coalition forces would find the Iraqi weapons of mass destruction one day.

Coalition forces and inspectors have so far been unable to find any Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. The U.S. invaded Iraq under the pretext that Iraq possessed a stockpile of weapons of mass destruction.

ENDS

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