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Swiss press applauds Iraq resolution

The Swiss papers have welcomed the new United Nations Security Council resolution on Iraq, which was unanimously approved on Thursday.

The papers agreed that the credit for the resolution obliging Iraq to give up weapons of mass destruction went to the United States president, George W Bush.

"Without Washington's sabre-rattling the Security Council would not have woken up and taken action," the Neue Zürcher Zeitung wrote.

With the passing of the resolution, the "countdown against Iraq" had finally begun, according to the Basler Zeitung and Berner Zeitung, while the Zürich-based Tages-Anzeiger spoke of a "ticking time bomb".

"Attempts to obstruct or mislead will inevitably lead to a military strike by the USA, which will cost the Iraqi dictator his all," the Berner Zeitung warned.

Great victory

Many papers viewed the passing of the resolution as a personal triumph for Bush, following on from his success in the midterm elections.

"With the new Iraq resolution, US president George W. Bush has scored another great victory this week," the Tages-Anzeiger wrote, while the Bern paper, Der Bund, said Bush was now at the peak of his powers.

Both papers saw the UN strengthened following the vote. "It has succeeded in preventing Washington from going it alone and in bringing the US into line with the UN," was the opinion of the Tages-Anzeiger.

"The international political authority of the Security Council has been endorsed, at least officially," Der Bund added.

Under the title "Resistance pays", the French-language paper Le Temps argued that the new resolution had made one thing clear: "The UN will from now on be accepted as a key centre of international relations."

But the Basler Zeitung claimed the Security Council was just a tool in the hands of the US:"This particular problem will remain even if Saddam Hussein does comply with the ultimatum."

Whether or not it will come to war with Iraq still remains to be seen, and in the view of the Tages-Anzeiger only one man can stop the time bomb: Saddam Hussein.

swissinfo


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