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Go-ahead for peace mission

THE FIVE permanent Security Council members last night agreed that UN Secretary- General Kofi Annan should go to Baghdad.

"We were able to agree orally with a number of basic principles," said the US Ambassador Bill Richardson.

However, Washington has said it reserved the right to disagree with Mr Annan if the outcome of his visit was not consistent with Security Council resolutions or America's own national interest. Neither Mr Richardson nor Britain's ambassador, Sir John Weston, would say how much negotiating room Mr Annan would have on his visit later this week.