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Bush, Annan Iraq
Aired November 13, 2002 - 14:33 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES... we, the world, expects (sic) Saddam Hussein to disarm for the sake of peace. And the U.N. stepped up to its responsibilities. And I want to thank you for that, Mr. Secretary General. I appreciate your leadership.
I'm looking forward to our discussion. Of course, I'll remind the secretary general that our war against terror is a war against individuals whose hearts are full of hate. We do not fight a religion.
As a matter of fact, by far the vast majority of American citizens respect the Islamic people and the Muslim faith. After all, there are millions of peaceful (sic) loving Muslim Americans.
Some of the comments that have been uttered about Islam do not reflect the sentiments of my government or the sentiments of most Americans.
Islam, as practiced by the vast majority of people, is a peaceful religion, a religion that respects others.
Ours is a country based upon tolerance, Mr. Secretary General. And we respect the faith and we welcome people of all faiths in America. And we're not going to let the war on terror or terrorists cause us to change our values.
And so, Mr. Secretary General, I'm honored that you're here at the Oval Office. I'm proud to call you friend and welcome.
KOFI ANNAN, SECRETARY GENERAL OF THE UNITED NATIONS: Thank you very much, Mr. President.
If I may comment on the last point you raised, I share your view entirely, but every region and people of every faith have also been victims of terrorists. This is a surge that affects all of us regardless of region or religion, and we need to stand together to defeat terrorism. And this is where the work of the United Nations and effective implementation of its Resolution 1373 is absolutely crucial.
We need to work to deprive terrorists of the opportunities by not giving them haven, by not giving them financial and logistical support.
And I think the counter-terrorism committee of the Security Council is doing a good job in trying to make sure we all work together on that. With regards to the Iraq decision, I want to thank you, Mr. President, for working with the United Nations and the council and working through the council. And I remember when you came to the U.N. on the 12th of September, nobody knew which way you were going to go. And in my own speech before yours, I was pleading that we go the multi-lateral route. And I think we were all relieved that we did -- you did.
And I would want to say that the council decision, which was unanimous, sent a powerful message that the entire international community would like to see the Security Council resolutions implemented.
Today I received a letter from the Iraqi government accepting the resolutions and that they would work with the resolution. And Mr. Blix and his team will go back. We expect them to get there on the 18th and actively begin their work. It's a Chapter 7 resolution and it must be implemented.
BUSH: Thank you.
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