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EU Welcomes Bush Commitment to Work Through UN on Iraq Weapons Issue - 2002-09-13

The European Union's head office has welcomed President Bush's commitment to work through the United Nations in demanding Iraq dispose of weapons of mass destruction.

The European Commission, in a statement Friday, said Mr. Bush's speech to the United Nations on Thursday outlined why the world should be concerned with Iraq.

The Commission called on Iraq to comply with U.N. Security Council resolutions on weapons disarmament.

The statement said Washington's strong engagement with the United Nations will make it easier to find a common line between the United States and the European Union.

In other European reaction, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said he is pleased Mr. Bush is working with the United Nations to disarm Iraq, but he underlined his opposition to war with Baghdad. Mr. Schroeder told the German parliament Friday that under his leadership, Germany would not take part in any U.S.-led military intervention.

The latest public opinion polls in Germany show that Mr. Schroeder's anti-war stance has boosted the standing of his Social Democrats ahead of federal elections September 22. The polls give the Social Democrats a lead (40 percent to 37 percent) over the conservative opposition, the Christian Democrats.