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Colin Powell to Meet with Turkish and NATO Officials


U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell leaves Tuesday – for Brussels and Ankara – to discuss the Iraq war with Turkish and NATO officials. It is to be the first overseas trip by a top administration official since the U.S. launched its military campaign to disarm Iraq. The aim – to repair relations with Turkey – and other key U.S. allies – strained by the U.S.—led war with Iraq. In a Sunday speech, Secretary Powell issued a warning to one of Iraq’s neighbors -- Syria – to stop supporting Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein and his regime.

Speaking at a conference sponsored by the American-Israel Public Affairs Committee – in Washington Sunday, Mr. Powell said Syria now faces what he called “a critical choice.”

COLIN POWELL, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE
“Syria can continue direct support for terrorist groups and the dying regime of Saddam Hussein, or it can embark on a different and more hopeful course. Either way, Syria bears the responsibility for its choices, and for the consequences.”

Secretary Powell also urged the international community to insist that Iran end its support for terrorists – including those opposed to Israel and the Middle East peace process.

COLIN POWELL, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE
“Teheran must stop pursuing weapons of mass destruction and the means to deliver them.”

Mr. Powell also restated the Bush administration’s pledge to soon release the so-called “road map” – to an Israeli—Palestinian peace accord.

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