Wien, 6. February 2003 Press release

Ferrero-Waldner: Secretary of State Colin Powell has presented an impressive and well-argued case - now it is up to the UN Security Council to draw the relevant conclusions

06.02.2003

Saddam Hussein finally has to realise the gravity of the situation

Vienna, 6 February 2003 - In response to the speech delivered by US Secretary of State Colin Powell to the UN Security Council, Foreign Minister Ferrero-Waldner stated that Powell had "presented alarming material regarding the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and connections to the al-Qa'ida terrorist network in an impressive and well-argued statement". It was now "within the responsibility of the Security Council to consider this detailed and in part very technical material and to draw the relevant conclusions from it". From the point of view of Ferrero-Waldner it would also be very useful "if the inspectors' further work could be facilitated by making available to them obviously existing additional material for their controls".

It is now "up to Saddam Hussein to finally realise the gravity of the situation, to take the initiative in cooperating with the inspectors and to actively convince the international public that he is fully complying with the Security Council's demands". The Foreign Minister concluded by pointing out that the decision on the further procedure and the evaluation of the evidence was now up to the UN Security Council, which - according to the UN-Charter - was responsible for maintaining global peace and international security.