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Public Papers - 1993

Remarks and an Exchange With Reporters on the Situation in Iraq

1993-01-15

The President. I have a brief statement that I want to make before heading up to Camp David. It relates to Iraq. And I just wanted to let you know that we continue to monitor Iraq's behavior for compliance with the United Nations resolutions.

Yesterday's mission was a success. It seriously depleted Iraq's air defense system, the one south of the 32d parallel. And nevertheless, we continue to examine the residual aspects of that mission.

In addition, we continue to demand access by United Nations aircraft for inspections in Iraq. And the United Nations has made it clear to the Iraqis that the United Nations inspection teams are prepared to resume their work and have the right to fly U.N. aircraft into that country at any time. The flight scheduled for today did not receive clearance to enter Iraqi airspace. And the United Nations has informed Saddam Hussein that if flight clearance is not granted by 4 p.m. Eastern Standard Time today, Iraq will be in noncompliance. And the coalition partners are firm in demanding compliance with United Nations resolutions.

Q. Does that mean you would bomb again?

The President. Helen [Helen Thomas, United Press International], you've been covering things around here ever since I've been President, and I'll never say what we do do or don't do in terms of compelling compliance.

Q. But you don't intend to give any further warnings, is that correct?

The President. I think sufficient warnings have been granted. And they know what they must do. And this is not just the United States. This is the United Nations. It's a strong coalition whose determination has not diminished in any single way.

So, we'll see you all.

Note: The President spoke at 12:35 p.m. on the South Lawn at the White House prior to his departure for Camp David, MD.

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