Mr. Speaker, this weekend we witnessed a remarkable outpouring of public concern over the prospect of war in Iraq. We all recognize that questions of war and peace rarely are to be settled by opinion polls, marches and rallies. However the millions of people who marched this weekend in all parts of the world sent a very powerful message to their governments. That message, I believe, is that all reasonable means to resolve the Iraqi question without resorting to war have not been exhausted.
On the question of Iraq possessing weapons of mass destruction or the capacity to produce them, the case today remains substantially unproved. Dr. Blix made this point on Friday. As noted, the absence of evidence does not prove there are none, but the absence of evidence does not prove their presence.
Compliance is the issue. There are many signs that the pressure on Saddam is forcing him to react. The pressure, not ruling out the possibility of war if the evidence is there, should be maintained, but war now continues to be extremely hard to justify.