UN sanctions against Iraq and weapons inspections "disarmed" former president Saddam Hu-ssein's regime, the UN's chief nuclear weapons inspector said in a magazine interview on published Sunday. \n"I think the sanctions worked, and more importantly, the inspections worked," Mohamed ElBaradei, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), told Newsweek. "A combination of sanctions and inspections managed to disarm Iraq." \nElBaradei's comments come as the US is considering an independent investigation into the US intelligence failure on Iraq's suspected chemical, biological and nuclear weapons program. \nThe Iraq Survey Group, a US team searching for Iraq's suspected weapons, has not found any stockpiles of banned weapons. \n"I think eventually we'll have to go back, as we are the ones who, frankly, have the credibility to say they do or do not have [a nuclear program] because we are impartial," he said. \nThe UN's weapons inspectors left Baghdad shortly before the US invaded Iraq without the backing of the UN Security Council. \n"Before the war, Iraq, at least in our area, was cooperating with us, trying its best to help. But it was too late," ElBaradei said. \n"I am worried because they still have a lot of people with the know-how and the technology," he said. "So I'd like to do some ongoing monitoring and verification in Iraq for a few years before we say this chapter is closed." \nAsked about the nuclear intentions of North Korea and Iran, the two countries President George W. Bush grouped with Iraq in the "axis of evil," ElBaradei said his "gut feeling" is that North Korea has a nuclear capability. \n"They probably have enough plutonium to make a few bombs," he said. \nHe continued, "This is a country that is completely beleaguered, isolated, has nothing to lose and has a weapons capability. ... We need to provide them security and humanitarian assistance, and in return make sure that we dismantle their weapons program." \nIn Iran, he said, "we haven't seen concrete evidence that Iran's [nuclear] program is linked to a weapons program."
FRENCH AID: Paris has sent a navy ship and aircraft from Reunion Island with some pollution control equipment, but rough seas are spreading the oil spill The operator of a Japanese bulk carrier which ran aground off Mauritius in the Indian Ocean yesterday apologized for a major oil spill, which officials and environmentalists say is creating an ecological disaster, as police prepared to board the ship. The MV Wakashio, operated by Mitsui OSK Lines, struck the reef on Mauritius’ southeast coast on July 25. “We apologize profusely and deeply for the great trouble we have caused,” Mitsui OSK Lines executive vice president Akihiko Ono said at a news conference in Tokyo. The company would “do everything in their power to resolve the issue,” he said. At least 1,000 tonnes of
They stand as eyesores to most passers-by and potential public health risks to authorities, decaying buildings wrapped in tangles of exposed wire, studded with protruding leaky plastic pipes, vegetation billowing from cracks and terraces where particulates from polluted air have accumulated over time. With skyscrapers and ultramodern developments on every side, some of these “nail houses” are also sitting on land worth millions of dollars in Shenzhen’s inferno of a property market, where new-unit and second-hand home prices rival London. In battles over land and development, the nail house phenomenon has become widespread throughout China over the past two decades, with owners
BEYOND CULTURE: The US State Department was expected to announce that the Chinese government-funded institutes would have to register as foreign missions US President Donald Trump’s administration is increasing scrutiny of a long-established Chinese-government funded program that is dedicated to teaching Chinese language and culture in the US and other nations, the latest escalation of tensions with Beijing. The US Department of State was expected to announce as soon as yesterday that Confucius Institutes in the US — many of which are based on college campuses — would have to register as “foreign missions,” according to people familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified. The designation would amount to a conclusion that the institutes are “substantially owned or effectively controlled” by
SHOW OF SOLIDARITY: The publisher’s ‘Apple Daily’ newspaper has had to raise the number of copies printed from 70,000 to 550,000 to meet a huge surge in demand They have occupied Hong Kong’s central business district, marched by the hundreds of thousands through the territory’s streets and endured tear gas and pepper spray in pitched battles with riot police. Hong Kong’s pro-democracy supporters are now wielding a new protest weapon: their stock-market trading accounts. To show support for Jimmy Lai (黎智英), the publisher and outspoken government critic who was on Monday arrested under the territory’s new national security legislation, Hong Kongers have been piling into shares of his media company Next Digital. The result: a more than 1,100 percent surge in two days that propelled the stock to a seven-year