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Europe

World Reaction to Saddam's Capture

European and world leaders congratulated the United States on the successful capture of Saddam Hussein. Many hoped the arrest would speed-up stability and democracy to Iraq.

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U.S. President George W. Bush

"In the history of Iraq, a dark and painful era is over.
A hopeful day has arrived. All Iraqis can now come together and reject violence and build a new Iraq ... Today, on behalf of the nation, I thank the members of our armed forces, and I congratulate them. I also have a message for all Americans: The capture of Saddam Hussein does not mean the end of violence in Iraq."

Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, Iraqi Governing Council

"This is a big blow to terrorists in Iraq. It is a great day for humanity and the Iraqi people."

German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder

"Saddam Hussein caused horrible suffering to his people and the region. I hope the capture will help the international community's effort to rebuild and stabilize Iraq."

French President Jacques Chirac

"This is a major event which should strongly contribute to
the democratization and the stabilisation of Iraq and allow the Iraqis to once more be masters of their destiny in a sovereign Iraq."

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman

"We hope that the latest development of the situation in
Iraq is conducive to the Iraqi people taking their destiny into their own hands."

Australian Prime Minister John Howard

"Until he was finally killed or captured, there was always
the fear he would come back. This will lift an enormous
psychological burden off the Iraqi people."

Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon

"We are relieved that this murderer and dictator can no longer stand in the way of rebuilding the country he destroyed."

Former UN Weapons Inspector Hans Blix

"He ought to know quite a lot and be able to tell the story and we all want to get to the bottom of the barrel."

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  • Date 15.12.2003
  • Author compiled from wire services
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  • Permalink http://p.dw.com/p/4Rzr
  • Date 15.12.2003
  • Author compiled from wire services
  • Print Print this page
  • Permalink http://p.dw.com/p/4Rzr