Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:30 pm on 10th February 1998.

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Photo of Robin Cook Robin Cook Foreign Secretary 3:30 pm, 10th February 1998

I am happy to give my right hon. Friend that assurance. The way in which Saddam and the Iraqi Government can obtain the lifting of the sanctions imposed by the resolutions is very simple: it is to comply with those resolutions, and to abandon their weapons of mass destruction. That is something that Saddam could have done at any time in the past seven years.

Nor can we accept the current demand by the Iraqi regime for eight presidential sites to be designated no-go areas for the inspectors. It is important for the House to understand that we are not simply talking about some kind of historical heritage palace; one of the sites is understood to be as big as Paris. We cannot allow such major loopholes in the inspection regime.