Published on Tuesday, January 12, 2010 by Agence
"There was insufficient legitimacy" for the invasion for which the
The commission's report said the wording of UN resolution 1441 "cannot reasonably be interpreted (as the Dutch government did) as authorising individual member states to use military force to compel
The resolution, passed in 2002, had offered
The Dutch commission, which started its work in March last year, was set up by the government following pressure from opposition politicians and the public for a probe of claims that crucial data had been withheld from Dutch decision-makers who opted to support the US-led action.
The probe found that Dutch policy on the issue had been defined by the foreign ministry under then minister Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, who later became NATO secretary-general.
"The Prime Minister (Jan Peter Balkenende, still premier today) took little or no lead in debates on the Iraq question; he left the matter of Iraq entirely to the minister of foreign affairs," the report said.
The commission also found that Dutch intelligence services did not have "any significant amount of independently sourced information" that
Balkenende has repeatedly stated that Dutch backing for the invasion was based on then-Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's refusal to respect UN Security Council resolutions.
The commission report said the Dutch government did not disclose to parliament the full content of a 2002
But there was "no evidence", it added, to support rumours that the
Last month, a former UN weapons inspector said former
An official inquiry has started in
© 2010 AFP
URL to article: http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/01/12-0