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CNN BREAKING NEWS

U.N. Will Temporarily Reduce Staff in Iraq

Aired September 25, 2003 - 12:18   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: We're just getting this information in to CNN, the United Nations secretary-general, Kofi Annan, apparently deciding, only within the past few hours or so, to go forward and reduce the number of U.N. personnel in Baghdad in Iraq at this time, citing security concerns.
The United Nations compound in Baghdad, twice in recent days and weeks, having been the target of suicide bombers in Baghdad; Kofi Annan deciding to go ahead and reduce the scale of the United Nations operation. The United Nations is playing a very significant role in Iraq in humanitarian issues and other matters.

This will be a severe setback for the people of Iraq, but understandably, if there are security concerns, Kofi Annan has to go forward and make that decision.

We'll get some more specific information on how many personnel are going to be heading back to the United Nations, how many people are going to be staying. We'll get that information to you as soon as we get it.

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