Blair: I believed 45-minute weapons claim 'beyond doubt'





Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair said he fully believed his pre-war claim that Iraq was capable of launching chemical and biological weapons within 45 minutes.

Blair said Friday that concern over Iraq's ambitions to develop weapons of mass destruction had been the main factor behind Britain's decision to back the war.

But he admitted Washington and London had different views, with the U.S. favoring regime change to overthrow Saddam Hussein's regime.

The 45-minute claim was made in Blair's preface to an intelligence document that came out in September 2002 and detailed the threat posed by Iraq. The document, Blair said, was "clear" in backing up the claim he made in the preface. No significant caches of chemical or biological weapons have been found in Iraq since the invasion.



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