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I won’t accept Iraq war verdict: Blair

30 May 2016 8:14


Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair has indicated that he will not accept the verdict of the upcoming Iraq war inquiry report if it accuses him of committing London to invading the Arab country before he told parliament.

Sir John Chilcot, a former British civil servant, is due to publish his long-awaited inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the March 2003 invasion of Iraq and its aftermath into the war on July 6. The Chilcot inquiry report is expected to be highly critical of Blair and other political and military officials.

According to a 2015 White House memo, Blair had agreed to support the war a year before the invasion even started, while publicly he was working to find a diplomatic solution to the crisis.

The document also disclosed that Blair agreed to act as a spin doctor for former US President George W. Bush and convince a skeptical public that Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction, which actually did not exist.

On Sunday, Blair told BBC he did not think anyone could say he did not make his position clear ahead of the 2003 Iraq war.

When asked if he would accept the Chilcot inquiry report, Blair said, “It is hard to say that when I haven’t seen it.”

“But I think when you go back and you look at what was said, I don’t think anyone can seriously dispute that I was making it very clear what my position was,” he continued.

The former Labour prime minister also said that he would appear on different news channels and defend himself after release of the Iraq war report.

“The thing that will be important when it does happen is that we have then a full debate,” Blair said. “And I look forward to participating in that. Make no mistake about that. It is really important we do debate these issues.”

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