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Cablegate: Croatian Foreign Ministry Statement On Iraq

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS ZAGREB 000072

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL IZ HR UN
SUBJECT: CROATIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY STATEMENT ON IRAQ


1. ON JANUARY 8, CROATIA'S FOREIGN MINISTRY ISSUED A
STATEMENT CALLING FOR IRAQ TO "PRESENT CREDIBLE EVIDENCE THAT
IT DOES NOT POSE A THREAT" TO INTERNATIONAL SECURITY. THE
STATEMENT (SEE BELOW FOR AN INFORMAL TRANSLATION) NOTES
CROATIA'S PARTICIPATION IN UNMOVIC, AND URGES THAT SHOULD AN
INSPECTION REGIME FAIL IN IRAQ THAT THE ISSUE MUST BE
REFERRED TO THE UN SECURITY COUNCIL. THE STATEMENT LAUDS
U.S. LEADERSHIP IN THE WAR AGAINST TERROR AND CALLS FOR A
GREATER ROLE FOR NATO, BUT AT THE SAME TIME EXPRESSES CONCERN
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 ZAGREB 00072 102351Z
FOR REACTION IN THE MIDDLE EAST TO POTENTIAL ACTION IN IRAQ.

2. BEGIN TEXT OF INFORMAL TRANSLATION OF JANUARY 8 MFA
STATEMENT:

CROATIA HAS BEEN MONITORING THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE CRISIS IN
THE MIDDLE EAST WITH CONCERN, AND IT APPEALS TO THE
GOVERNMENT IN IRAQ TO CONSISTENTLY COOPERATE IN IMPLEMENTING
U.N. RESOLUTION 1441 WHICH CAN CONTRIBUTE TO A PEACEFUL
SOLUTION OF THE CRISIS.

THE CROATIAN GOVERNMENT UNANIMOUSLY SUPPORTED THE ADOPTION OF
U.N. SECURITY COUNCIL RESOLUTION 1441 IN NOVEMBER 2002
REGARDING THE INSPECTION REGIME IN IRAQ.

IRAQ MUST PRESENT CREDIBLE EVIDENCE THAT IT DOES NOT POSE A
THREAT TO WORLD PEACE AND THAT ITS ACTIONS WILL NOT INCREASE
THE DANGER OF WAR.

WITHIN ITS CAPACITY, CROATIA IS CONTRIBUTING TO THE
SUCCESSFUL WORK OF THE UNMOVIC INSPECTION TEAM IN IRAQ
THROUGH THE PARTICIPATION OF ITS EXPERT INSPECTORS.

SHOULD THE INSPECTION TEAM NOT SUCCEED, CROATIA BELIEVES THAT
A SOLUTION TO THE PROBLEM SHOULD BE SOUGHT THROUGH THE
SECURITY COUNCIL. ACCORDING TO THE INTERPRETATION OF
RESOLUTION 1441 GIVEN AT THE SECURITY COUNCIL SESSION IN
WHICH IT WAS ADOPTED, THE SECURITY COUNCIL SHOULD BE
CONSULTED FIRST IN CASE OF ANY VIOLATION OF THE INSPECTION
REGIME BY IRAQ.

UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 ZAGREB 00072 102351Z
IN THIS REGARD, CROATIA ONCE AGAIN CALLS ON IRAQ TO FULLY
CO-OPERATE WITH UNMOVIC INSPECTORS AND IS AWAITING A UN
REPORT EXPECTED LATE IN FEBRUARY. CROATIA THUS SUPPORTS
RESPECT FOR INTERNATIONAL LAW AND THE ROLE OF THAT WORLD
ORGANIZATION IN RESOLVING CRISIS SITUATIONS.

CROATIA CONSISTENTLY ADVOCATES THE CONTROL, BAN AND
ELIMINATION OF WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION, AND IS VERY
ACTIVE IN THE UN AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL FORA IN TERMS OF
CONSISTENT APPLICATION OF ALL CONVENTIONS RELATIVE TO THIS
TYPE OF WEAPONRY.

CROATIA ALSO WELCOMES THE EFFORTS MADE BY THE U.S. AS THE
LEADING POWER IN THE INTERNATIONAL ANTI-TERRORIST COALITION,
AND THOSE MADE BY NATO. AS A CANDIDATE FOR MEMBERSHIP IN
NATO, CROATIA HOLDS THAT THE ALLIANCE SHOULD BE UTILIZED EVEN
MORE IN FIGHTING GLOBAL TERRORISM AND IN DEFENSE OF THE
HIGHEST DEMOCRATIC PRINCIPLES, INTERNATIONAL PEACE AND
SECURITY.

NEVERTHELESS, CROATIA IS CONCERNED ABOUT ANY POSSIBLE
REPERCUSSIONS OF A MILITARY SOLUTION TO THE CRISIS IN THE
ENTIRE REGION OF THE NEAR AND MIDDLE EAST. IN THIS REGARD,
EXPECTED REPERCUSSIONS OF A POSSIBLE ESCALATION OF THE CRISIS
COULD ENTAIL A HUGE NUMBER OF CIVILIAN VICTIMS, A MASS
REFUGEE CRISIS AND DISRUPTION OF THE GLOBAL ECONOMY.

END TEXT.
MOON

UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 04 ZAGREB 00072 102351Z

UNCLASSIFIED

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