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Iraq Rejects US Suggestion Weapons Report Is Incomplete - 2002-12-19


Iraq is rejecting U.S. suggestions that the country's 12,000-page filing on its weapons of mass destruction programs is incomplete.

Iraq's ruling Baath Party newspaper, Al Thawra, called talk of omissions in the country's report on its weapons programs "nonsense." In an editorial Thursday, the paper said that President Bush is using any justification he can find for war against Iraq.

Another Iraqi paper, Al Jumhoriya, carried a front-page editorial Thursday calling U.S. threats of violence nothing but "a dog bark". And other newspapers in the region joined in the criticism of the U.S. position.

In Dubai, the government owned daily al Bayan also rejected U.S. claims of omissions in the Iraqi dossier. And some newspapers in Saudi Arabia said Washington and London were using the issue to further hidden oil related agendas.

On Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell said there were gaps and omissions in Iraq's dossier, but he added that it remains unclear whether Washington will declare that Iraq is in "material breach" of a U.N. resolution requiring it to disarm or face serious consequences.

Meanwhile in Iraq, weapons inspectors Thursday visited four more locations, including a military facility and pesticide plant, searching for possible evidence that the country could be housing or producing weapons of mass destruction. As in past inspections, the U.N. team had no comment on what it saw.

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