NEWS

Cypriot base for UN Iraq inspectors

NICOSIA (AP) – Cyprus will be used as a base for the UN weapons inspectors for Iraq, Foreign Minister Yiannakis Cassoulides said yesterday. An agreement has been reached for the establishment of an office in Cyprus «which will be used as the base from where UN weapons inspectors will move to Iraq to implement Security Council resolutions,» Cassoulides told reporters. He said the agreement was reached between Cyprus and the UN Monitoring Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) in cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency. «All necessary provisions have been made so that the office can become operational,» Cassoulides said. The office may open «the soonest possible,» he said, without giving a date. The United States accuses Iraq of stockpiling weapons of mass destruction and is pressing for the adoption of a tough UN Security Council resolution that would allow the use of force if Iraq does not meet its UN disarmament obligations.