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Russia promises help to Iraq

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Moscow, April 13, Ria-Novosti/ACSNA/IRNA -- Moscow is concerned over 
the situation in Iraq, the trouble in which peaceful Iraqis living in 
US-besieged Falluja have found themselves, and the disproportionate 
use of force by the occupation troops, sources in the Russian Foreign 
Ministry told RIA Novosti. 
What can be done in the conditions of the Iraqis` on-going 
resistance to the occupation forces? Russia`s position remains 
unchanged. 
"Iraq`s sovereignty should be restored as soon as possible, the 
authority should be transferred to national structures, and the UN 
should lead the political settlement in Iraq. The UN should be 
provided with real authority, and not just serve as an umbrella 
covering US policy in Iraq." 
Unfortunately, "the Americans [so far] see the role of this 
international organization as this," the diplomatic sources said. 
How much time and how many victims do the Americans need before 
they begin listening to the international community? Indeed, the 
current developments in Iraq have hardly come as a surprise, wrote 
Ria-Novosti`s political analyst Marianna Belenkaya. 
A year ago, Russia, as well as some European and Arab nations, 
warned the United States that the Iraq invasion could have disastrous 
consequences for the country, the entire region, and even the 
international community. 
These detailed forecasts have come true, as we see today. But the 
United States was determined to invade Iraq. 
Intoxicated with their quick and easy victory, the Americans 
decided they had done the right thing. As a result, Washington refused
to listen to Russian and other experts` post-war recommendations and 
made many new mistakes. 
Iraq could have had its sovereignty restored last spring or 
summer, shortly after May 1 -- the official date when hostilities were
declared to have come to an end. It was at this moment that the UN 
could have become involved in Iraq`s political and economic revival. 
However, it took an entire year to finish heated debates in the UN and
distribute contracts for Iraq`s restoration. 
Now nobody needs these contracts because it is impossible to work 
in Iraq until the situation returns to normal, which is still a 
distant prospect. 
But the most dreadful thing is that Iraq has turned into another 
bridgehead for international terrorist organizations, which seldom 
miss the chance to take advantage of the situation. Not only the 
Americans, but also their allies in the Iraq war have fallen into 
their trap. 
International terrorists have already managed to replace the 
Spanish government, and now it is the turn of the United States, 
however strange this might sound. 
The hostage taking of Japanese citizens in Iraq might lead to a 
certain crisis in Japan. The list could be continued. 
Hasan Nasrallah, leader of the Hezbollah extremist group based in 
Lebanon, said recently, "We understand that we cannot force foreign 
troops out of Iraq, but we can remove President Bush from the White 
House." 
In this situation, nations that did not support the USA could also
fell victim to the threat. Extremists have already acquired the unique
experience of political blackmailing in Iraq, which they can apply in 
relation to other countries and regions. The international community 
now should spare no effort to conceal its weak points. 
As for Iraq, the only opportunity to stabilize the situation here 
is for Washington to signal its willingness to listen to the 
international community`s recommendations and to transfer sovereignty 
to the Iraqis as soon as possible, perhaps, even ahead of schedule. 
Officially, authority is to be handed over to the Iraqis on June 30. 
However, now is not the time to criticize the United States. "We 
understand that the situation in Iraq is so dangerous that we must act
together to deal with it, while mistakes can be analyzed afterwards," 
said Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Anatoly Safonov, who is currently
on a visit to India. 
But does the United States understand this? Or will it again act 
under the illusion of its own might without heeding the voice of 
reason? 
Whatever the answer may be to these questions, Moscow is always 
ready to provide realistic assistance to find a solution to this most 
serious crisis. 
/AH/210 
End 



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