First Published: 2003-08-22

 
Iraq is decomposing: de Villepin
 

New UN resolution won't stop decomposition of Iraq, worsen cycle of violence.

 

Middle East Online

We told you

PARIS - Iraq is currently in a state of "decomposition" that will not be reversed until the Iraqi people recover their sovereignty, French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin said in a radio interview Friday.

De Villepin also told the private RTL radio station that a new UN resolution in which Washington was asking for other countries to bolster its occupying forces would simply "see the cycle of violence worsen".

The statement came amid continuing controversy over the massive explosion that destroyed the United Nations' headquarters in Baghdad, killing at least 23 people, on Tuesday.

"A logic of occupation must be rapidly replaced by a logic of sovereignty," the minister said, and questioned whether the current approach of the US-led coalition, which he said was "essentially security-oriented," had not failed.

The US-sponsored resolution, he said, "does not respond to the situation of the ground, which is both a situation of decomposition, of discouragement for the Iraqi people and at the same time a logic of confrontation."

The "security race," as he put it, was creating a trap in which Washington was seeking to reinforce its military might in Iraq while "Iraqi nationalists, Islamic fundamentalists and terrorists" were also increasing their activities targeting them.

"Nothing would be worse than to come up with temporary fixes, to try to shore up shaky foundations," he said.

Without the Iraqis feeling as if they were running their own country, "the risk is to see the Iraqi trap get bigger, to see the cycle of violence worsen.... It is clear today that the violence is sparing no-one, nothing.... Sabotage of water, oil pipelines, the Jordanian embassy, the UN, the US forces."

To put an end to all that, de Villepin said, the authority of Iraq's US-appointed interim Governing Council should be strengthened, then elections should be set up "perhaps by the end of the year" to put in place a provisional government.

He said such moves were "the condition for success" and should be the basis on which a new UN Security Council resolution should be drafted.

He said the resolution being touted by the United States meant France was confronted with "a big choice", and hinted that France felt that the US resolution would not clear up a "a certain ambiguity" posed by the US military occupation in Iraq.

But for all his criticism of the US path of action, de Villepin did not say that France would oppose the US resolution.

France, one of the most vocal opponents of the war against Iraq and one of five veto-wielding members of the UN Security Council, has argued that the United States cannot ask nations to make a greater contribution to security efforts without relinquishing an element of control.

"To share the burden and the responsibilities in a world of equal and sovereign nations, also means sharing information and authority," Deputy French Ambassador Michel Duclos told the UN Security Council on Thursday.

But US officials insist there is no need for a broadening of the existing UN mandate.

US Secretary of State Colin Powell said Thursday the United States was exploring a new UN resolution that would spur the deployment of more international troops in Iraq without ceding US operational authority.

Following talks in New York with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan, Powell said US and UN officials were discussing various measures aimed at improving the security situation in Iraq.

A senior State Department official in Washington said the text of a resolution could be ready as early as next week, "but we won't be looking for a vote until early September."

 

Egypt declares three-month state of emergency in Sinai

Lebanon army attacks Islamists as violence spreads to Tripoli souks

Dozens dead in Huthi-Qaeda clashes in central Yemen

Punishment for sexual assault in Iran: Execution of victim!

European clubs step up campaign against winter World Cup in Qatar

Turkey keeps 24 people under observation after yellow powder scare

Russia denies Kerry claims: No agreement to train Iraq army

Germany offers to help Armenia forge peace with Turkey

Libya wakes up from ‘Dubai dream’ to face Somalia-like ‘failed state’

South Yemen separatists vow to intensify secession protests

Relatives of Iraq massacre victims: Blackwater guards should be killed

Ghannouchi makes it clear to Tunisia: It’s either political Islam or Daesh!

Deadly clashes erupt after army raid in northern Lebanon

200 Iraqi Kurd fighters to travel through Turkey to Kobane

Coalition strikes in Syria eliminate more than 500 jihadists in one month

Ahead of elections, new clashes remind Tunisia of need to fight terror

Saudi Arabia jails mothers for preparing sons to wage jihad

Jury finds Blackwater guards guilty of 2007 'massacre' in Iraq

Iraq Kurds approve reinforcements for Kobane

Israel classifies car crash as ‘hit and run terror attack’

Turkish woman arrested for stepping on Koran

Erdogan criticises US for airdrops on Kobane

Iraq schools provide shelter but late to open for classes

Syria air force shoots down two of three 'IS warplanes'

Egypt court rules on ‘Nasr City terror cell’

Fire from Egypt wounds two Israeli soldiers near border

By hook or by crook, settlers notch up property gains in East Jerusalem

Turkey envoy meets leader of parallel government in Libya

Israel arrests seven Palestinian fishermen off northern Gaza

Khamenei to Abadi: Iraq can beat 'Islamic State' without foreign troops

Saudi special court rules in cases of riots and terrorism

Libya army scores small victory in Benghazi

Only in Libya: Government calls for civil disobedience

Kasserine reaps bitter harvest from Tunisia revolution: Poverty and terrorism

Iraq Kurds set to vote on deployment of Peshmerga forces to Syria

Islamic State ‘share in US weapons’ embarrasses Pentagon

Alderton: Morocco unrivalled business gateway to sub-Saharan Africa

Protests over IS turn Istanbul University into war zone

Turkey eyes stricter punishment against lawbreakers at protests

For Sudan President: Promises are something and re-election is something else

Iran returns Abadi to ‘house of obedience’

From traditional military to counterinsurgency force: Syria army grows more capable

South Sudan rivals accept 'responsibility' for civil war

British drones in Iraq also used for Syria surveillance

Turkey launches new wave of wire-tapping arrests