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Bush Vows to Press UN for Action on Iraq - 2002-09-19


President Bush says he will continue to press the U.N. for action on Iraq while working with the U.S. Congress to draft a resolution of support for the possible use of force against Saddam Hussein. Mr. Bush spoke at the end of a meeting with the four top congressional leaders.

For the second day in a row, the president dismissed Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's offer to admit weapons inspectors. He urged the U.N. to take a strong stand.

"It's his latest ploy, his latest attempt not to be held accountable for defying the United Nations. He is not going to fool anybody," the president said.

Mr. Bush spoke at the end of a meeting with Congressional leaders that centered on the Iraqi threat. He welcomed their commitment to hold a vote on Iraq before lawmakers leave Washington to campaign full-time for the November elections.

"I think it is an important signal," he said. "It is an important signal for the country. It is also an important signal for the world to see this country is united in our resolve."

Later, White House Spokesman said Iraq's offer has not delayed action at the United Nations. He said the president believes there should be strict guidelines before inspectors go back to Iraq, saying past approaches did not work.

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