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Blix Questions Basis of Iraq War
Hans Blix, the United Nations' chief weapons inspector in Iraq in the run-up to the United States-led war there, Thursday questioned whether countries should start wars based on information gathered by intelligence agencies.

Interviewed by the French daily Le Monde, Blix said the Iraq conflict had thrown up a host of questions over how a war can be justified and whether United Nations backing is needed for military action.

"This is not the first time that force has been used on the basis of intelligence which turned out to be false," Blix was quoted as saying, referring to US and British claims that Iraq was harboring weapons of mass destruction.

Weeks after the end of the war in Iraq, US and British forces have still not found any such weapons.

Meanwhile, US troops were yesterday questioning 400 Iraqis detained in a massive military operation north of Baghdad, seeking those who are allegedly organizing and carrying out attacks on US occupation forces.

The combined sweep, dubbed Operation Peninsula Strike, continued for a third day, sending thousands of US troops through an area of several square kilometers centered on the Tigris River town of Duluiyah 70 kilometers north of Baghdad.

(China Daily June 13, 2003)

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