Iraq: We Had Enough Arms to Destroy World; Revealed:the Face of 'Dr Pox'

By Graham, Bob | The Mail on Sunday (London, England), December 8, 2002 | Go to article overview

Iraq: We Had Enough Arms to Destroy World; Revealed:the Face of 'Dr Pox'


Graham, Bob, The Mail on Sunday (London, England)


Byline: BOB GRAHAM

SADDAM Hussein admitted for the first time last night that Iraq had developed an extensive nuclear, chemical and biological weapons programme that could have devastated the world.

But he claimed the weapons had now all been destroyed, abandoned or made safe.

The admission came as Iraq handed nearly 12,000 pages of complex documents to UN weapons inspectors in Baghdad - and apologised to the Kuwaitis for the 1990 invasion which led to the Gulf War.

A statement from the dictator, read out on Iraqi TV, said: 'We apologise to God for any deed that angered Him in the past, which we might not have known of and is blamed on us, and on this basis we also apologise to you.' The statement also called on Kuwaitis to rise against 'the occupation of infidel armies'.

The deadline for the handover under UN Resolution 1441 was noon today but Iraqi officials tried to claim the moral high ground by producing the documents early.

Although details are to remain secret until the report has been fully scrutinised by UN weapons officials - then viewed by American and British officials - Iraqi officials privately disclosed key aspects.

'There will be details of nuclear programmes and of how we produced chemical weapons and planned to develop a biological programme,' one senior Iraqi official told The Mail on Sunday.

'But we will be as sure to explain that all these programmes no longer exist. They have been eradicated by the inspections that took place in the Nineties or have been abandoned because it was too difficult to get the necessary components.' The official admitted that had the Weapons of Mass Destruction programme been allowed to proceed unhindered, it would have been capable of 'destroying the whole world'.

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