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Profile: Naji Sabri

 
  

Positions that Naji Sabri has held:

  • Iraqi Foreign Minister under Saddam Hussein


 

Quotes

 
  

Quote, November 10, 2002

   “The United States' use of the Security Council as a cover for aggression against Iraq was foiled by the international community because the international community does not share the appetite of the evil administration in Washington for aggression, murder and destruction.” [Guardian, 11/11/02]

Associated Events


 

Relations

 
  

No related entities for this entity.


 

Naji Sabri actively participated in the following events:

 
  

September 16, 2002      Events Leading to Iraq Invasion

       Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri meets with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Arab League Secretary-General Amir Moussa and gives them a letter expressing Baghdad's willingness to readmit the UN weapons inspectors without conditions. The offer is made after Saddam Hussein convened an emergency meeting in Baghdad with his cabinet and the Revolutionary Command Council (RCC). [Associated Press, 9/16/02a; Independent, 9/17/02; New York Times, 9/17/02 Sources: Iraq's September 16, 2002 letter accepting the unconditional return of weapons inspectors] Iraq's letter is effectively an agreement to December 1999 UN Security Council Resolution 1284. [New York Times, 9/18/02] Kofi Annan tells reporters after the meeting, “I can confirm to you that I have received a letter from the Iraqi authorities conveying its decision to allow the return of the inspectors without conditions to continue their work and has also agreed that they are ready to start immediate discussions on the practical arrangements for the return of the inspectors to resume their work.” Annan credits the Arab League, which he says “played a key role” in influencing Saddam Hussein's decision to accept the inspectors, and suggests that Bush's speech also played a critical part in influencing Baghdad's decision. [UN, 9/16/02] UNMOVIC Chief Weapons Inspector Hans Blix also meets with Iraqi officials and it is reportedly agreed that weapons inspectors will return to Iraq on October 19. UNMOVIC spokesman Ewen Buchanan tells the BBC, “We are ready to discuss practical measures, such as helicopters, hotels, the installation of monitoring equipment and so on, which need to be put in place.” [BBC, 9/17/02] The Bush administration immediately rejects the offer, calling it “a tactical step by Iraq in hopes of avoiding strong UN Security Council action,” in a statement released by the deputy press secretary. [White House, 9/16/2002; Associated Press, 9/16/02] And Dan Bartlett, the White House communications director, tells reporters: “We've made it very clear that we are not in the business of negotiating with Saddam Hussein. We are working with the UN Security Council to determine the most effective way to reach our goal.” He then claims Iraq's offer is a tactic to give “false hope to the international community that [President Saddam] means business this time,” adding, “Unfortunately, his more than decade of experience shows you can put very little into his words or deeds.” Two days later Bush will tell reporters that Saddam's offer is “his latest ploy, his latest attempt not to be held accountable for defying the United Nations,” adding: “He's not going to fool anybody. We've seen him before. . . . We'll remind the world that, by defying resolutions, he's become more and more of a threat to world peace. [The world] must rise up and deal with this threat, and that's what we expect the Security Council to do.” [Agence France Presse, 9/19/02; Independent, 9/17/02] Later that night, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice reportedly hold a conference call with Kofi Annan and accuse him of taking matters into his own hands. [Vanity Fair, 5/2004, pg 285] Britain supports the US position and calls for a UN resolution backed with the threat of force. [BBC, 9/17/03] Other nations react differently to the offer. For example, Russia's Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, says: “It's important that, through our joint efforts, we have managed to put aside the threat of a war scenario around Iraq and return the process to a political channel ... It is essential in the coming days to resolve the issue of the inspectors' return. For this, no new [Security Council] resolutions are needed.” [BBC, 9/17/03; Independent, 9/17/02]
People and organizations involved: Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Hans Blix, Saddam Hussein, Amir Moussa, Scott McClellan, Kofi Annan, Naji Sabri, Dan Bartlett  Additional Info 
          

September 19, 2002      Events Leading to Iraq Invasion

       Iraqi foreign minister Naji Sabri tells the UN: “I hereby declare before you that Iraq is totally clear of all nuclear, chemical and biological weapons. Our country is ready to receive any scientific experts, accompanied by politicians you choose to represent any one of your countries, to tell us which places and scientific and industrial installations they would wish to see.” [New York Times, 9/20/02] The Iraq minister also states that in pursuing its aggressive policy towards Iraq, the US is “acting on behalf of Zionism which has been killing the heroic people of Palestine, destroying their property, murdering their children,” adding that Washington intends to “control Middle East oil.” His words draw the applause of several UN diplomats. [Independent, 9/20/02]
People and organizations involved: Naji Sabri
          

September 23, 2002      Events Leading to Iraq Invasion

       Three retired four-star generals testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee and warn Congress that a unilateral strike against Iraq without UN approval might limit aid from allies, create more recruits for al-Qaeda and subvert long term US diplomatic and economic interests. A fourth general urges the committee to support the use of military force against Iraq. [New York Times, 9/24/02]
People and organizations involved: Kofi Annan, US Congress, Amir Moussa, Wesley Clark, Naji Sabri  Additional Info 
          

November 23, 2002      Events Leading to Iraq Invasion

       Iraqi Foreign Minister Naji Sabri complains in a letter to Secretary-General Kofi Annan that the US intends to use UN Resolution 1441 as a pretext to use military force against Iraq. In the letter, he analyzes several paragraphs in the UN resolution, demonstrating how they are based on assumptions and how the US plans to use some of the key provisions as a pretext for invading Iraq. [CTV News, 11/25/2002 Sources: November 23, 2002 Iraqi letter to UN]
People and organizations involved: Naji Sabri
          

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