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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

Europe's, China's Reactions to U.N. Iraq Resolution

Aired November 8, 2002 - 12:16   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: It took an enormous amount of wheeling and dealing to get that U.N. Security Council resolution passed.
Let's get some reaction now from around the world. Joining me from London, our senior international correspondent, Sheila MacVicar, and via videophone, our Beijing bureau chief, Jaime FlorCruz. First, let's go to Sheila.

I guess they're pretty excited, pretty happy, at least in the British government -- Sheila?

SHEILA MACVICAR, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well in the British government and in the French government too. Remember, this is eight weeks of intensive negotiation. And remember when we started, it was the U.S. administration insisting that there would be one resolution and one resolution only, there would be no further discussion, that that one resolution would provide essentially what could amount to an automatic trigger for war. And instead what we've ended up with is at least something that looks like the initial French proposal which was the two resolutions scenario where we don't have a guarantee of a second resolution but we do have is a commitment to renewed dialogue.

And that's really what the Europeans, the French in particular, have been talking about from France's president, Jacques Chirac, this afternoon saying that this is a chance for Iraq to disarm peacefully. And from Britain's Prime Minister Tony Blair, who you could argue was instrumental in persuading President Bush to go the route of seeking international consensus by going to the U.N. in the first place in those late days of August and early September, saying, you know, basically warning Saddam Hussein, defy the U.N. and we will disarm you by force. But going on to say, look at, I may find your regime abhorrent, but its survival is in your hands -- Wolf.

BLITZER: Sheila MacVicar, thanks very much for that insight from Europe.

Let's move on, get some reaction now from China. Our Beijing bureau chief Jaime FlorCruz is joining us with that.

The Chinese government, in the end, Jaime, decided to go along not only to not abstain, not veto but to support this resolution -- why?

JAIME FLORCRUZ, CNN BEIJING BUREAU CHIEF: It's indeed significant, Wolf, that China decided to vote in favor of the revised version of the resolution, but it's not totally surprising because it does conform with the pragmatic posture of the Chinese leaders who happen to be in Beijing now for a landmark communist party meeting. In the opening session this morning, President Jiang, who is also the party chief, said that China is ready to work with other countries for global peace and development. He said peace is important for China so they can focus on its domestic agenda of economic development.

The vote -- the yes vote is also a friendly gesture to President George W. Bush with whom President Jiang held a summit meeting at Crawford, Texas just a few days ago.

Still, wolf, the -- China's position on the Iraq issue remains fundamentally unchanged which is that Iraq should abide by the Security Council resolutions and allow unimpeded access to the U.N. inspectors. However, China does not want the U.S. to take any unilateral military action against Iraq. They want this resolved through political and diplomatic means within the U.N. framework -- Wolf.

BLITZER: Jaime FlorCruz in Beijing, thanks very much for that insight.

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