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Fischer calls for returnto US ‘moral’ leadership

12 May 2004

WASHINGTON – German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer said Tuesday that the United States must quickly punish those responsible for abusing Iraqi prisoners to lead to the restoration of American “moral” leadership.

 “We are looking forward that this situation will lead … to a restoration of the leadership, of the moral leadership of the United States because this is crucial for all of us,” Fischer said after meeting with US Secretary of State Colin Powell.

The two diplomats met in Washington to discuss the prisoner scandal that has sparked worldwide outrage, the transfer of sovereignty to Iraq on June 30 and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“We are going to get to the bottom of this and make sure that justice is done,” Powell said during the press conference of the prison crisis.

Fischer and Powell also discussed a new UN Security Council resolution related to the formal end to the US-led occupation.

Germany, along with France and Russia, thwarted the US effort to win Security Council support for the invasion in a diplomatic struggle that soured relations between the two countries, which have since declared the dispute in the past.

They also discussed Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s proposal to withdraw from the Gaza Strip and parts of the West Bank.

Powell is hosting on Friday a gathering of G-8 foreign ministers to prepare for June’s summit between the world’s seven leading developed economies plus Russia.



Subject: German news