Iraq – future of the United Nations on the line

Speaking at a meeting of his Constituency Labour Party last night, Gavin Strang MP told local party members that the United Nations must deliver a resolution to the Iraq crisis.

Speaking in the Labour Rooms, Portobello, Gavin Strang said

‘The outcome of the current crisis over Iraq could make or break the United Nations.

‘For eleven years the United Nations Security Council has had resolutions banning Iraq from developing weapons of mass destruction. And for eleven years Iraq has flouted those resolutions.

‘I am very pleased that the United Nations Security Council was able to agree Resolution 1441 earlier this month, and that weapons inspectors have now returned to Iraq.

‘Before the UN reached this agreement, it looked very likely that the United States would ignore the UN and opt for immediate unilateral military action. This could have had very dangerous implications for the Middle East, and for the coalition against international terrorism that has been pieced together since 11 September last year.

‘The reputation of the United Nations is now on the line.

‘If the United Nations Security Council can see this crisis through to the end – if Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction programmes are completely dismantled – then the authority of the UN will be greatly enhanced.

‘But if Iraq is allowed to continue with its weapons programmes without an effective response from the international community, then the United Nations will have failed, and the reputation of the UN will be weakened for a generation.

‘The UN was created to deal with matters like Iraq, and the UN must deliver.’