TEXT - as delivered
Oral introduction of the 12th
quarterly report of UNMOVIC
For nearly three years, I have
been coming to the Security Council presenting the quarterly
reports of UNMOVIC. They have described our many preparations for
the resumption of inspections in Iraq. The 12th quarterly report
is the first that describes three months of inspections. They come
after four years without inspections. The report was finalized ten
days ago and a number of relevant events have taken place since
then. Today's statement will supplement the circulated report on
these points to bring the Council up-to-date.
Inspections in Iraq resumed on 27
November 2002. In matters relating to process, notably prompt
access to sites, we have faced relatively few difficulties and
certainly much less than those that were faced by UNSCOM in the
period 1991 to 1998. This may well be due to the strong outside
Some practical matters, which were
not settled by the talks, Dr. ElBaradei and I had with the Iraqi
side in Vienna prior to inspections or in resolution 1441 (2002),
have been resolved at meetings, which we have had in Baghdad.
Initial difficulties raised by the Iraqi side about helicopters
and aerial surveillance planes operating in the no-fly zones were
overcome. This is not to say that the operation of inspections is
free from frictions, but at this juncture we are able to perform
professional no-notice inspections all over Iraq and to increase
American U-2 and French Mirage
surveillance aircraft already give us valuable imagery,
supplementing satellite pictures and we would expect soon to be
able to add night vision capability through an aircraft offered to
us by the Russian Federation. We also expect to add low-level,
close area surveillance through drones provided by Germany. We are
grateful not only to the countries, which place these valuable
tools at our disposal, but also to the States, most recently
Cyprus, which has agreed to the stationing of aircraft on their
Documents and interviews
Iraq, with a highly developed
administrative system, should be able to provide more documentary
evidence about its proscribed weapons programmes. Only a few new
such documents have come to light so far and been handed over
since we began inspections. It was a disappointment that Iraq's
Declaration of 7 December did not bring new documentary evidence.
I hope that efforts in this respect, including the appointment of
a governmental commission, will give significant results. When
proscribed items are deemed unaccounted for it is above all
credible accounts that is needed ? or the proscribed items, if
Where authentic documents do not
become available, interviews with persons, who may have relevant
knowledge and experience, may be another way of obtaining
evidence. UNMOVIC has names of such persons in its records and
they are among the people whom we seek to interview. In the last
month, Iraq has provided us with the names of many persons, who
may be relevant sources of information, in particular, persons who
took part in various phases of the unilateral destruction of
biological and chemical weapons, and proscribed missiles in 1991.
The provision of names prompts two
reflections: The first is that with such detailed information
existing regarding those who took part in the unilateral
destruction, surely there must also remain records regarding the
quantities and other data concerning the various items destroyed.
The second reflection is that with
relevant witnesses available it becomes even more important to be
able to conduct interviews in modes and locations, which allow us
to be confident that the testimony is given without outside
While the Iraqi side seems to have
encouraged interviewees not to request the presence of Iraqi
officials (so-called minders) or the taping of the interviews,
conditions ensuring the absence of undue influences are difficult
to attain inside Iraq. Interviews outside the country might
provide such assurance. It is our intention to request such
interviews shortly. Nevertheless, despite remaining shortcomings,
interviews are useful. Since we started requesting interviews, 38
individuals were asked for private interviews, of which 10
accepted under our terms, 7 of these during the last week.
As I noted on 14 February,
intelligence authorities have claimed that weapons of mass
destruction are moved around Iraq by trucks and, in particular,
that there are mobile production units for biological weapons. The
Iraqi side states that such activities do not exist. Several
inspections have taken place at declared and undeclared sites in
relation to mobile production facilities. Food testing mobile
laboratories and mobile workshops have been seen, as well as large
containers with seed processing equipment. No evidence of
proscribed activities have so far been found. Iraq is expected to
assist in the development of credible ways to conduct random
checks of ground transportation.
Inspectors are also engaged in
examining Iraq's programme for Remotely Piloted Vehicles (RPVs). A
number of sites have been inspected with data being collected to
assess the range and other capabilities of the various models
found. Inspections are continuing in this area.
There have been reports, denied
from the Iraqi side, that proscribed activities are conducted
underground. Iraq should provide information on any underground
structure suitable for the production or storage of WMD. During
inspections of declared or undeclared facilities, inspection teams
have examined building structures for any possible underground
facilities. In addition, ground penetrating radar equipment was
used in several specific locations. No underground facilities for
chemical or biological production or storage were found so far.
I should add that, both for the
monitoring of ground transportation and for the inspection of
underground facilities, we would need to increase our staff in
Iraq. I am not talking about a doubling of the staff. I would
rather have twice the amount of high quality information about
sites to inspect than twice the number of expert inspectors to
On 14 February, I reported to the
Council that the Iraqi side had become more active in taking and
proposing steps, which potentially might shed new light on
unresolved disarmament issues. Even a week ago, when the current
quarterly report was finalized, there was still relatively little
tangible progress to note. Hence, the cautious formulations in the
report before you.
As of today, there is more. While
during our meetings in Baghdad, the Iraqi side tried to persuade
us that the Al Samoud 2 missiles they have declared fall within
the permissible range set by the Security Council, the
calculations of an international panel of experts led us to the
opposite conclusion. Iraq has since accepted that these missiles
and associated items be destroyed and has started the process of
destruction under our supervision. The destruction undertaken
constitutes a substantial measure of disarmament ? indeed, the
first since the middle of the 1990s. We are not watching the
breaking of toothpicks.
Lethal weapons are being
destroyed. However, I must add that no destruction has happened
today. I hope it's a temporary break.
To date, 34 Al Samoud 2 missiles,
including 4 training missiles, 2 combat warheads, 1 launcher and 5
engines have been destroyed under UNMOVIC supervision. Work is
continuing to identify and inventory the parts and equipment
associated with the Al Samoud 2 programme.
Two 'reconstituted' casting
chambers used in the production of solid propellant missiles have
been destroyed and the remnants melted or encased in concrete.
The legality of the Al Fatah
missile is still under review, pending further investigation and
measurement of various parameters of that missile.
More papers on anthrax, VX and
missiles have recently been provided. Many have been found to
restate what Iraq had already declared, some will require further
study and discussion.
There is a significant Iraqi
effort underway to clarify a major source of uncertainty as to the
quantities of biological and chemical weapons, which were
unilaterally destroyed in 1991. A part of this effort concerns a
disposal site, which was deemed too dangerous for full
investigation in the past. It is now being re-excavated. To date,
Iraq has unearthed eight complete bombs comprising two
liquid-filled intact R-400 bombs and six other complete bombs.
Bomb fragments were also found. Samples have been taken. The
investigation of the destruction site could, in the best case,
allow the determination of the number of bombs destroyed at that
site. It should be followed by a serious and credible effort to
determine the separate issue of how many R-400 type bombs were
produced. In this, as in other matters, inspection work is moving
on and may yield results.
Iraq proposed an investigation
using advanced technology to quantify the amount of unilaterally
destroyed anthrax dumped at a site. However, even if the use of
advanced technology could quantify the amount of anthrax, said to
be dumped at the site, the results would still be open to
interpretation. Defining the quantity of anthrax destroyed must,
of course, be followed by efforts to establish what quantity was
With respect to VX, Iraq has
recently suggested a similar method to quantify a VX precursor
stated to have been unilaterally destroyed in the summer of 1991.
Iraq has also recently informed us
that, following the adoption of the presidential decree
prohibiting private individuals and mixed companies from engaging
in work related to WMD, further legislation on the subject is to
be enacted. This appears to be in response to a letter from
UNMOVIC requesting clarification of the issue.
What are we to make of these
activities? One can hardly avoid the impression that, after a
period of somewhat reluctant cooperation, there has been an
acceleration of initiatives from the Iraqi side since the end of
This is welcome, but the value of
these measures must be soberly judged by how many question marks
they actually succeed in straightening out. This is not yet clear.
Against this background, the
question is now asked whether Iraq has cooperated
"immediately, unconditionally and actively" with
UNMOVIC, as required under paragraph 9 of resolution 1441 (2002).
The answers can be seen from the factual descriptions I have
provided. However, if more direct answers are desired, I would say
the following: The Iraqi side has tried on occasion to attach
conditions, as it did regarding helicopters and U-2 planes. Iraq
has not, however, so far persisted in these or other conditions
for the exercise of any of our inspection rights. If it did, we
would report it.
It is obvious that, while the
numerous initiatives, which are now taken by the Iraqi side with a
view to resolving some long-standing open disarmament issues, can
be seen as "active", or even "proactive",
these initiatives 3-4 months into the new resolution cannot be
said to constitute "immediate" cooperation. Nor do they
necessarily cover all areas of relevance.
They are nevertheless welcome and
UNMOVIC is responding to them in the hope of solving presently
unresolved disarmament issues.
Mr. President, Members of the
Council may relate most of what I have said to resolution 1441
(2002), but UNMOVIC is performing work under several resolutions
of the Security Council. The quarterly report before you is
submitted in accordance with resolution 1284 (1999), which not
only created UNMOVIC but also continues to guide much of our work.
Under the time lines set by the resolution, the results of some of
this work is to be reported to the Council before the end of this
month. Let me be more specific.
Resolution 1284 (1999) instructs
UNMOVIC to "address unresolved disarmament issues" and
to identify "key remaining disarmament tasks" and the
latter are to be submitted for approval by the Council in the
context of a work programme.
UNMOVIC will be ready to submit a
draft work programme this month as required.
UNSCOM and the Amorim Panel did
valuable work to identify the disarmament issues, which were still
open at the end of 1998. UNMOVIC has used this material as
starting points but analysed the data behind it and data and
documents post 1998 up to the present time to compile its own list
of "unresolved disarmament issues" or, rather, clustered
issues. It is the answers to these issues which we seek through
our inspection activities.
It is from the list of these
clustered issues that UNMOVIC will identify the "key
remaining disarmament tasks". As noted in the report before
you, this list of clustered issues is ready.
UNMOVIC is only required to submit
the work programme with the "key remaining disarmament
tasks" to the Council. As I understand that several Council
members are interested in the working document with the complete
clusters of disarmament issues, we have declassified it and are
ready to make it available to members of the Council on request.
In this working document, which may still be adjusted in the light
of new information, members will get a more up-to-date review of
the outstanding issues than in the documents of 1999, which
members usually refer to. Each cluster in the working document
ends with a number of points indicating what Iraq could do to
solve the issue. Hence, Iraq's cooperation could be measured
against the successful resolution of issues.
I should note that the working
document contains much information and discussion about the issues
which existed at the end of 1998 ? including information which has
come to light after 1998. It contains much less information and
discussion about the period after 1998, primarily because of
paucity of information.
agencies have expressed the view that proscribed programmes have
continued or restarted in this period. It is further contended
that proscribed programmes and items are located in underground
facilities, as I mentioned, and that proscribed items are being
moved around Iraq. The working document contains some suggestions
on how these concerns may be tackled.
Let me conclude by telling you
that UNMOVIC is currently drafting the work programme, which
resolution 1284 (1999) requires us to submit this month. It will
obviously contain our proposed list of key remaining disarmament
tasks; it will describe the reinforced system of ongoing
monitoring and verification that the Council has asked us to
implement; it will also describe the various subsystems which
constitute the programme, e.g. for aerial surveillance, for
information from governments and suppliers, for sampling, for the
checking of road traffic, etc.
How much time would it take to
resolve the key remaining disarmament tasks? While cooperation can
and is to be immediate, disarmament and at any rate the
verification of it cannot be instant. Even with a proactive Iraqi
attitude, induced by continued outside pressure, it would still
take some time to verify sites and items, analyse documents,
interview relevant persons, and draw conclusions. It would not
take years, nor weeks, but months. Neither governments nor
inspectors would want disarmament inspection to go on forever.
However, it must be remembered
that in accordance with the governing resolutions, a sustained
inspection and monitoring system is to remain in place after
verified disarmament to give confidence and to strike an alarm, if
signs were seen of the revival of any proscribed weapons