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White House Timeline on Iraq

Timeline detailing history of efforts to obtain weapons inspections in Iraq, as released by the White House:

-- April 3, 1991: U.N. Security Council Resolution 687 (1991), Section C, declares that Iraq shall accept unconditionally, under international supervision, the "destruction, removal or rendering harmless" of its weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles with a range over 150 kilometers. One week later, Iraq accepts Resolution 687. Its provisions were reiterated and reinforced in subsequent action by the United Nations in June and August of 1991.

-- May 1991: Iraq accepts the privileges and immunities of the Special Commission (UNSCOM) and its personnel. These guarantees include the right of "unrestricted freedom of entry and exit without delay or hindrance of its personnel, property, supplies, equipment."

-- June 1991: Iraqi personnel fire warning shots to prevent the inspectors from approaching the vehicles.

-- September 1991: Iraqi officials confiscate documents from the inspectors. The inspectors refuse to yield a second set of documents. In response, Iraq refuses to allow the team to leave the site with these documents. A four-day standoff ensues, but Iraq permits the team to leave with the documents after a statement from the Security Council threatens enforcement actions.

-- Oct. 11, 1991: The Security Council adopts Resolution 715, which approves joint UNSCOM and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) plans for ongoing monitoring and verification. UNSCOM's plan establishes that Iraq shall "accept unconditionally the inspectors and all other personnel designated by the Special Commission."

-- Oct. 1991: Iraq states that it considers the Ongoing Monitoring and Verification Plans adopted by Resolution 715 to be unlawful and states that it is not ready to comply with Resolution 715.

-- Feb. 1992: Iraq refuses to comply with an UNSCOM/IAEA decision to destroy certain facilities used in proscribed programs and related items.

-- April 1992: Iraq calls for a halt to UNSCOM's aerial surveillance flights, stating that the aircraft and its pilot might be endangered. The President of the Security Council issues a statement reaffirming UNSCOM's right to conduct such flights. Iraq says that it does not intend to carry out any military action aimed at UNSCOM's aerial flights.

-- July 6-29, 1992: Iraq refuses an inspection team access to the Iraqi Ministry of Agriculture. UNSCOM said it had reliable information that the site contained archives related to proscribed activities. Inspectors gained access only after members of the Council threatened enforcement action.

-- January 1993: Iraq refuses to allow UNSCOM to use its own aircraft to fly into Iraq.

-- June-July 1993: Iraq refuses to allow UNSCOM inspectors to install remote-controlled monitoring cameras at two missile engine test stands.

-- Nov. 26, 1993: Iraq accepts Resolution 715 and the plans for ongoing monitoring and verification.

-- Oct. 15, 1994: The Security Council adopts Resolution 949, which demands that Iraq "cooperate fully" with UNSCOM and that it withdraw all military units deployed to southern Iraq to their original positions. Iraq withdraws its forces and resumes working with UNSCOM.

-- March 1996: Iraqi security forces refuse UNSCOM teams access to five sites designated for inspection. The teams enter the sites after delays of up to 17 hours.

-- March 19, 1996: The Security Council issues a presidential statement expressing its concern over Iraq's behavior, which it terms "a clear violation of Iraq's obligations under relevant resolutions." The council also demands that Iraq allow UNSCOM teams immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access to all sites designated for inspection.

-- March 27, 1996: Security Council Resolution 1051 approves the export/import monitoring mechanism for Iraq and demands that Iraq meet unconditionally all its obligations under the mechanism and cooperate fully with the Special Commission and the director-general of the IAEA.

-- June 1996: Iraq denies UNSCOM teams access to sites under investigation for their involvement in the "concealment mechanism" for proscribed items.

-- June 12, 1996: The Security Council adopts Resolution 1060, which terms Iraq's actions a clear violation of the provisions of the council's earlier resolutions. It also demands that Iraq grant "immediate and unrestricted access" to all sites designated for inspection by UNSCOM.

-- June 13, 1996: Despite the adoption of Resolution 1060, Iraq again denies access to another inspection team.

-- Nov. 1996: Iraq blocks UNSCOM from removing remnants of missile engines for in-depth analysis outside Iraq.

-- June 1997: Iraqi escorts on board an UNSCOM helicopter try to physically prevent the UNSCOM pilot from flying the helicopter in the direction of its intended destination.

-- June 21, 1997: Iraq again blocks UNSCOM teams from entering certain sites for inspection.

-- June 21, 1997: The Security Council adopts Resolution 1115, which condemns Iraq's actions and demands that Iraq allow UNSCOM's team immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access to any sites for inspection and officials for interviews.

-- Sept. 13, 1997: An Iraqi officer attacks an UNSCOM inspector on board an UNSCOM helicopter while the inspector is attempting to take photographs of unauthorized movement of Iraqi vehicles inside a site designated for inspection.

-- Sept. 17, 1997: While seeking access to a site declared by Iraq to be "sensitive," UNSCOM inspectors witness and videotape Iraqi guards moving files, burning documents and dumping ash-filled waste cans into a nearby river.

-- Nov. 12, 1997: The Security Council adopts Resolution 1137, condemning Iraq for continually violating its obligations, including its decision to seek to impose conditions on cooperation with UNSCOM. The resolution also imposes a travel restriction on Iraqi officials who are responsible for or participated in instances of noncompliance.

-- Nov. 3, 1997: Iraq demands that U.S. citizens working for UNSCOM leave Iraq immediately.

-- Dec. 22, 1997: The Security Council issues a statement calling upon the government of Iraq to cooperate fully with the commission and stresses that failure by Iraq to provide immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access to any site is an unacceptable and clear violation of Security Council resolutions.

-- Feb. 20-23, 1998: Iraq signs a Memorandum of Understanding with the United Nations on February 23, 1998. Iraq pledges to accept all relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate fully with UNSCOM and the IAEA, and to grant to UNSCOM and the IAEA "immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access" for their inspections.

-- Aug. 5, 1998: The Revolutionary Command Council and the Ba'ath Party Command decide to stop cooperating with UNSCOM and the IAEA until the Security Council agrees to lift the oil embargo as a first step toward ending sanctions.