Ten years on, Blair admits Iraq situation is not as he'd hoped
LONDON (AFP) - Former British prime minister Tony Blair admitted on Tuesday that the situation in Iraq is "not nearly" what he hoped it would be when Britain joined the United States-led invasion to depose Saddam Hussein ten years ago.
He said he had made the best of an "ugly" choice between taking action against the Iraqi dictator in 2003 or running the risk that Hussein would launch chemical and biological attacks against his own people or the outside world.
"There are actually significant improvements in many parts of the country for the people, but I agree with you, it's not nearly what it should be," the former Labour leader told the BBC in an interview marking ten years since the invasion.
Around 162,000 people, almost 80 per cent of them civilians, were killed in Iraq between the start of the US-led invasion and the withdrawal of US forces in December 2011, according to British NGO Iraq Body Count.