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Iraq Pays China $100 Million for Arms


Iraqi President Jalal Talabani says Baghdad has ordered light military equipment from China because the United States is unable to provide them and is too slow to deliver arms shipments.

Mr. Talabani told the Washington Post Wednesday that the weapons, worth $100 million, are intended for Iraq's police force. He said U.S. factories do not have the capacity to meet Baghdad's requirements.

Mr. Talabani, who was in Washington for talks with President Bush, also called for faster deliveries of U.S. weapons to strengthen the Iraqi army.

U.S. officials have acknowledged that Washington faced problems delivering everything Iraq needed.

But they also point out that Iraqi security forces have been unable to account for nearly 200,000 U.S. supplied weapons. It is feared that many of those weapons might have gone to various insurgent and militia groups seeking to destabilize Iraq and target U.S. troops.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.

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