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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Ivanov Says War's Outcome Uncertain

APPresident Vladimir Putin shaking hands Tuesday with Peru's Allan Wagner as Costa Rica's Roberto Tovar Faja, left, and Celso Amorim of Brazil look on.
Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said a U.S. victory in Iraq was "far from certain" as the Iraqi army still retains its potential, and warned that the campaign was prompting Russia to strengthen its own military, according to an interview published Tuesday.

Ivanov was quoted by Komsomolskaya Pravda as saying the military was closely following the war in Iraq, making conclusions related to the development of prospective weapons. He added that the Iraqis were still capable of mounting strong opposition.

If U.S. troops "launch carpet bombings, Iraq won't hold out for long, but they are yet to dare doing that because the political damage would be huge," Ivanov said. "But if they try to fight with minimal losses, accurately as they are doing it now, avoiding big clashes, the outcome is far from certain. Iraq has quite a serious army, and it hasn't yet started to fight."

Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, meanwhile, met with the foreign ministers of the Rio Group on Tuesday to discuss the war and its effect on the "world order."

"Both Russia and Latin American countries are for strengthening the role of the United Nations, multilateral mechanisms and principles of international law, on the basis of which controversies, including major international conflicts, should be solved," Ivanov said after the meeting with the foreign ministers of Peru, Brazil and Costa Rica.

President Vladimir Putin earlier told the ministers that their visit should help bolster cooperation between Russia and Latin America.

 In response to the war, an advisory council to Primorye Governor Sergei Darkin denounced American movies as propaganda of U.S. global domination, the regional administration said Tuesday.

The council recommended that law enforcement agencies audit local broadcasters to see whether they had bought the rights to the U.S. movies they show.

 A Russian doctor said Tuesday he has launched an effort to bring wounded children out of Iraq and urged the United States to cooperate with the initiative, which would require a temporary halt to attacks on Baghdad and Basra.

Leonid Roshal told reporters that he wanted to conduct a broad evacuation campaign, but he said the first step would be to remove wounded children from Baghdad and Basra. They could be treated in Russia and other countries and return to Iraq after the war.