Iraq said on Monday the United States would fail to keep sanctions on it intact for long due to pressure from other members of the U.N. Security Council.
The ruling Baath Party newspaper al-Thawra said not all countries shared Washington's interpretation of the 1991 gulf war cease-fire resolutions and predicted the oil embargo would be lifted once the United Nations closes its weapons files."The embargo will wither away despite the American stand," declared the paper.
A senior Iraqi official, Ali Hassan al-Majeed, who is member of the all-powerful Revolutionary Command Council and the Baath Party's regional comand, struck a similar chord in remarks published on Monday.
Baghdad newspapers said Majeed told a gathering of workers from the southern city of Basra that 1995 would the last year for Iraq under sanctions.
U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Madeleine Albright said last week that Iraq's latest revelations of its nuclear and biological weapons programs made the lifting of sanctions a remote possibility.
Asked if sanctions could be lifted next year, she said: "It's pretty tough, I have to say, for me to imagine.
"The ungodly (the United States and its allies) massing their capabilities to undermine the will of the Iraqis shall gain nothing but humiliation and loss."
Iraq made startling disclosures of its past weapons programs following the defection to Jordan of Lt. Gen. Hussein Kamel Hassan, the brains behind the country's military industries.
"The American campaign stirs a lot of scorn due to its silly nature which indicates how desperate and frustrated the Americans have become in their attempts to undermine Iraq's valor," Thawra said.
It said Washington's insistence to maintain sanctions by adding conditions other than those in the gulf war cease-fire amounted to an act of genocide against the Iraqi people.