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Weapons Inspectors and Iraq - Part 1
A brief look into the timeline
Israel - Middle East
Thursday, November 21, 2002
J.M.Dass

The recent timeline regarding Iraq outlines a pattern of blatant disrespect of UN Resolutions by Saddam Hussein's regime. Iraq is an unstable country and a threat to the entire world.

Iraq's consistent denials in the face of irrefutable evidence, its innumerable changes in its policies and decisions are not the hallmarks of a dependable state.

America does not want a repeat of the 1990s.

These timeline tells the story behind zero-tolerance approach, the reason for the current team of 'weapons inspectors' under Hans Blix and why the world can't trust Saddam anymore, if ever it thought it could.

Chronological Timeline:

April 3, 1991, Resolution 687 Section 'c' of the UN Security Council declares an unconditional acceptance on part of Iraq to destroy and declare its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles with a range over 150 kilometers. Iraq accepts the resolution a week later.

June 1991, UNSCOM conducts first chemical inspections and try to intercept Iraqi vehicles loaded with nuclear related equipment. Iraqis fire warning shots. The equipment is later seized and destroyed.

June 17, 1991, resolution 699 adopted for UNSCOM and IAEA to jointly conduct activities.

August 15, 1991, another Resolution 707 adopted by the Security Council for Iraq to immediately disclose all information as required by Resolutiion 687.

September 1991, the weapon's inspection team find documents relating to Iraq's efforts to acquire nuclear weapons, Iraqi officials confiscate some documents but UNSCOM refuses to handover the rest. A four-day stand off in the parking lot of the site results in a statement from Security Council threatening enforcement. Iraqi officials let the team go with the documents.

October 11, 1991, the Security Council passes Resolution 715 approving joint UNSCOM and IAEA plans for ongoing monitoring and verification. Iraq calls this Resolutioin 'unlawful'.

February 1992, Iraq refuses to destroy certain facilities as adviced by UNSCOM/IAEA. Later agrees to destroy under UN pressure.

April 1992, Iraq tells UNSCOM to stop its aerial surveillance flights but UN reiterates its right to such flights.

July 1992, A large number of Iraq's chemical weapons and production facilities are destroyed by UNSCOM.

January 1993, Iraq starts making incursions into the demilitarized zone between Kuwait and Iraq increasing military activities in the no-fly zone. It stops the UNSCOM from flying it into Iraq. After air raids by American, British and French forces it allows the resumption of flights.

July 1993, Refuses the UNSCOM to install remote monitored cameras at two missile engine test stands.

November 26, 1993, Iraq accepts Resolution 715.

October 15, 1994, Resolution 949 adopted demanding cooperation with UNSCOM and withdrawal of all military unit from Southern Iraq to its original locations.

July 1995, Iraq threatens to end cooperation with UNSCOM and IAEA, if sanctions and oil embargo is not lifted by August 31, 1995.

March 1996, UNSCOM teams are denied access to about five sites by Iraqi forces.

March 27, 1996, Resolution 1051 passed for monitoring export and import mechanism of Iraq.

May to June 1996, Al Hakam, a biological warfare agents manufacturing facility is destroyed by UNSCOM.

June 1996, Iraq denies entry to sites again.

June 12, 1996, Resolution 1060 adopted condemning Iraq for refusal to grant inspection access. Iraq continues to be defiant and denies access to another team.

November 1996, Iraq refuses the removal of its destroyed missile engines to be analyzed outside of Iraq.

June 1997, UNSCOM pilots are physically stopped onboard by accompanying Iraqi escorts from flying the chopper to its intended destination.

June 21, 1997, Security Council Resolution 1115 adopted as Iraq blocks certain sites for inspection again. Resolution condemns Iraq and demands immediate access for weapon's inspector.

September 1997, An UNSCOM inspector on board an UNSCOM chopper is attacked by an Iraqi officer for photographing vehicular movement at a designated site.

October 1997, Weapons inspectors are blocked from entering three sites claimed to be 'presidential sites' by Iraq.

October 23, 1997, Resolution 1134 adopted condemning Iraq for non-cooperation and suspending periodic reviews of sanctions depending upon the reports of UNSCOM inspectors.

October 29, 1997, Iraq writes a letter to the Security Council briefing about its latest Policy decisions.

The letter states Iraqi intention of not dealing with American citizens working with UNSCOM and demands all American nationals from the team to leave Iraq by a specified deadline.

November 12, 1997, Resolution 1137 adopted condemning Iraq for non-cooperating as well as imposing travel restrictions on Iraqi officials involved in non-compliance.

Novemeber 13, 1997, Iraq orders all Americans in the team to leave immediately. Majority of staff leaves and a skeleton staff remains to oversee UNSCOM premises and equipment.

November 20, 1997, Getting into an agreement with the Russian Federation, Iraq agrees to allow the inspectors back.

December 1997, Chief weapons inspector Richard Butler reports that Iraq is barring the Commission from accessing as what Iraq calls 'presidential' and 'sovereign' sites.

January 1998, Iraq starts its old rhetoric of withdrawing cooperation, as it says that the team contains too many American and British nationals.

February 1998, A memorandum of understanding (MoU) is signed between Iraq and UN for Iraq's full cooperation with UNSCOM and IAEA.

March 2, 1998, Security Council endorses the MoU through Resolution 1154

September 1998, Richard Butler briefs the Security Council about UNSCOM's activities and operations including three incidents where Iraq put more restrictions on Commission's monitoring activities.

September 9, 1998, Resolution 1194 condems Iraq for suspending cooperation.

November 1998, Iraq stops all cooperation with UNSCOM.

December 1998, 'Operation Desert Fox' begins, US and British troops unleash extensive bombardment of Iraq. Within days Iraq declares that the inspectors will not be allowed to return.

June 1999, Weapons Chief Richard Butler steps down after his contract is finished.

December 17, 1999, Resolution 1284 replaces UNSCOM and creates a UN monitoring, verification and inspection commission (UNMOVIC).

Iraq rejected this resolution refuses entry to UNMOVIC, setting the stage for the current confrontation.



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