Text of Annan's Statement

The following is U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan's statement on Iraqi weapons inspections:

"A lot has happened in this building since Thursday. I believe the president's speech galvanized the international community. As most of you heard, almost each speaker, every speaker in the General Assembly urged Iraq to accept the inspectors, the return of the inspectors, and I can confirm to you that I have received a letter from the Iraqi authorities conveying its decision to allow the return of the inspectors without conditions to continue their work and has also agreed that they were ready to start immediate discussions on the practical arrangement for the return of the inspectors to resume their work.

"I would want to pay particular tribute to all the member states and the Arab League who played a key role in this and to thank Secretary-General Amr Moussa of the Arab League for his strenuous efforts in helping to convince Iraq to allow the return of the inspectors. I am now passing the letter on to the Security Council and they will have to decide what they do next, and of course [executive chairman of the U.N. Monitoring Verification and Inspection Commission] Mr. Hans Blix and his team will be ready to continue their work."