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Putin Says War in Iraq May Wreck International Security System - 20 March, 2003

The war on Iraq might threaten the whole region with a wide-scale humanitarian and environmental disaster, Russian President Vladimir Putin believes.

On Thursday, speaking at a Kremlin meeting, the Russian President noted that the "international security system might collapse as well, and it causes concerns." "If we let international law be replaced by clublaw, when the strongest is always right, almighty and has an unlimited choice of means to achieve his goals, one of the cornerstones of international law, sovereignty, will be put in question then," the President said.

According to him, if this happens, "no one, no country will feel safe and the present-day hotbed of instability will spread and cause negative consequences in other regions of the world." That is why Russia seeks to stop the military action as soon as possible, the President emphasized.

"We are still convinced that the main role in settling international crises, including the one around Iraq, must belong to the UN Security Council," the President said.