Letter dated 10 February 2003 from the Permanent Representatives of France, Germany and the Russian Federation to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council
We would like to bring to the attention of the members of the Security Council that, during the recent visit of the President of the Russian Federation to Berlin and Paris, a joint declaration by the Russian Federation, Germany and France was issued on the situation in Iraq (see annex).
We should like to emphasize that the ideas expressed in that declaration are not limited to the three signatories. We therefore appeal to other Council members to express their support for the declaration.
We should be grateful if you would have the present letter and its annex circulated as a document of the Security Council.
(Signed) Sergey Lavrov
Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation
(Signed) Gunter Pleuger
Permanent Representative of Germany
(Signed) Jean-Marc de La Sablière
Permanent Representative of France
Annex to the letter dated 10 February 2003 from the Permanent Representatives of France, Germany and the Russian Federation to the United Nations addressed to the President of the Security Council
Joint declaration by the Russian Federation, Germany and France
The Russian Federation, Germany and France, in close coordination, reaffirm that the disarmament of Iraq, in accordance with the relevant United Nations resolutions since resolution 687 (1991), is the common aim of the international community, and that it must be pursued to its conclusion within the shortest possible period.
There is a debate over the means to achieve this. This debate must continue in the spirit of friendship and respect that characterizes our relations with the United States of America. It should be inspired by the principles of the Charter of the United Nations, as stated recently by Mr. Kofi Annan.
Resolution 1441 (2002), adopted unanimously by the Security Council, provides a framework whose possibilities have not yet been thoroughly explored.
The inspections conducted by the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission (UNMOVIC) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have already yielded results. The Russian Federation, Germany and France favour the continuation of inspections and the substantial strengthening of their human and technical capabilities by all possible means and in consultation with the inspectors, within the framework of resolution 1441 (2002).
There is still an alternative to war. The use of force could only be a last resort. The Russian Federation, Germany and France are determined to allow every opportunity for the peaceful disarmament of Iraq.
It is up to Iraq to cooperate actively with UNMOVIC and IAEA so that they can complete the inspections. Iraq must face up to its responsibilities in full.
The Russian Federation, Germany and France note that the position they express coincides with that of a large number of countries, within the Security Council in particular.