Saudi overproducing oil to support Iraq war effort

  • From: "Muslim News" <editor_@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <submit@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 6 Sep 2002 21:33:51 +0100

LONDON (Reuters) - Any U.S. war against Baghdad would come from a nation
hungry for revenge led by a president "obsessed" with Iraq and is bound
to end in tragedy, Saudi Arabia's ambassador to London said Thursday. 

Ghazi Algosaibi, describing himself as a friend of America, said his
country would not back any military strike against Iraqi President
Saddam Hussein and would not allow the United States to use any of its
airbases for any such attack. 

"I don't know what is going to happen next, but I know that (President
Bush) is going to hit Iraq, and it is going to end up a tragedy," the
ambassador said in an interview with Britain's Spectator weekly news

Algosaibi expressed deep concern that a strike against Saddam would
increase instability in the Middle East region, but said Saudi Arabia
was trying its best to keep oil prices steady. 

"The feeling in the Middle East is so overboiling that I hate to think
what is going to happen. We will do our best to keep the oil price
steady. If it wasn't for Saudi Arabia, oil would probably be double its
price now." 

The ambassador said that since the attacks on September 11 last year,
the United States had been "gripped by mass hysteria." 

"They are just stunned, and looking left and right for revenge," he
said. "What is the rational explanation for hitting Iraq? I don't
understand it. Nobody understands it. I think Bush is obsessed with
hitting Iraq." 

Decades of broadly friendly relations between the United States and the
oil-rich Saudi kingdom have been severely tested by Bush's declaration
of a "war on terror" after the September 11 attacks and his
determination to topple Saddam. 

Washington blames the September 11 attacks on Saudi-born militant Osama
bin Laden and his al Qaeda network. Fifteen of the 19 hijackers accused
of crashing aircraft into New York and Washington were believed to be
Saudi nationals. 

Saudi Arabia stripped bin Laden of his citizenship in the mid-1990s,
allegedly for activities against the royal family. 

Secretary of State Colin Powell sought to calm tensions last week by
describing U.S.-Saudi relations as "good and strong." 

Source:  Reuters

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