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Russian Foreign Minister Arrives in New York UN Security Council Session on Iraq - 19 March, 2003

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov has arrived in New York to take part in the session of the UN Security Council on Iraq.

The session will be attended by a number of Foreign Ministers of the UN Security Council's member-states. However, US Secretary of State Colin Powell said that he would not participate in the session.

It has been planned that at this meeting the Council's members will analyse the results of the work of the UNMOVIC and IAEA inspectors and determine the remaining unfulfilled tasks for the disarmament of Iraq.

The Russian Foreign Minister stated earlier that "the session should adopt a concrete programme for the work of the UN Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) with the aim of disarming Iraq in a realistic period of time." The initiative of holding an urgent session on Iraq was taken by Russia, France and Germany, which were supported by China, on Saturday.

The day before, Russia, France, Germany, China and a number of other countries stated they did not accept the ultimatum to Baghdad presented by George W. Bush in his televised address to the nation.

Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said that Resolution 1441 of the UN Security Council "does not give anybody the right to use force automatically." At the session of the UN Security Council, Igor Ivanov will again confirm Russia's position that the possibilities for a political settlement of the Iraqi problem "have not been exhausted at all, on the contrary, they are quite realistic."

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