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Washington, D.C. – If the U.S. decides to take military action against Iraq, it should not be defined as "preemptive", according to U.S. Senator Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., who echoed the words of Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member, Joe Biden, D-Del.

"I want to reiterate what Senator Biden said in his opening comment. We are not talking about preemption here. We should get rid of that notion. This is the enforcement of a United Nations surrender agreement. I think this was a very significant comment," said Enzi.

The comments came at a Foreign Relations Committee hearing this morning called by Chairman Richard Lugar, R-Ind., to explore in more detail the recent reports by Dr. Hans Blix and Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei, the chief U.N. arms inspectors.

Enzi and fellow committee members heard testimony from and posed questions to Deputy Secretary of State, Richard L. Armitage and the U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., John D. Negroponte.

Enzi, one of two congressional delegates to the 57th General Assembly of the U.N., noted the recent findings of empty chemical weapons warheads and asked Negroponte what the reaction of U.N. Security Council delegates has been to that and other recent news from the weapons inspection team.

"Whatever else delegates at the Security Council might feel, I think there is almost unanimous agreement, with the possible exception of Syria, that Iraq needs to do more to proactively cooperate with the inspectors," Negroponte said.

"I know that to people in Wyoming and other people I've talked to in the country, the finding of those shell casings, whether they had anything in them or not, was a realization that Iraq did declare it had those things and it hasn't shown us where the remains are if it did destroy them. I'm hoping this was the same reaction at the U.N.," said Enzi.

Enzi believes other countries, in addition the U.S., are losing patience with Iraq. Eight European leaders appealed for unity against Iraq today in a joint opinion piece published in several newspapers in Europe and America. The leaders included British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Italy's Silvio Berlusconi, Spain's Jose Maria Aznar, Portugal's Jose-Manuel Barroso, Denmark's Anders Fogh Rasmussen, the Czech Republic's Vaclav Havel, Poland's Leszek Miller and Hungary's Peter Medgyessy.

Enzi also agreed with Biden that the more countries that unify against Iraq's noncompliance with U.N. resolutions, the better the chance a war can be avoided.