Iraq: Peacekeeping Operations

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 1st April 2008.

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Photo of Tobias Ellwood Tobias Ellwood Shadow Minister (Culture, Media and Sport)

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs

(1) what discussions his Department had with the United States about the decision to disband the Iraqi Army and the Ba'ath Party in May 2003;

(2) what discussions he had with the United States on the decision to disband the Iraqi Army and the Ba'ath Party in May 2003.

Photo of Kim Howells Kim Howells Minister of State, Foreign & Commonwealth Office

The detail of exchanges between the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the US Administration in 2003 remains confidential. By the end of the initial hostilities the Iraqi army had effectively dissolved itself—there were no formed units, no equipment and all barracks had been comprehensively looted. At the same time throughout Iraq there was overwhelming popular pressure for de-Ba'athification to begin, reflecting the suffering and resentment among ordinary Iraqis as a consequence of three decades of repression by Saddam Hussein's regime.

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