LONDON, March 5 (UPI) -- Former chief U.N. weapons inspector Hans Blix declared the assault on Iraq last March illegal in an interview Friday with The Independent of London.
Blix said a second United Nations resolution explicitly authorizing the use of force for the invasion would have been necessary to have been legal.
"I don't buy the argument the war was legalized by the Iraqi violation of earlier resolutions," Blix, an international lawyer, said.
Blix said while Iraq had breached the 1991 cease-fire by violating U.N. resolutions, the "ownership" of the resolutions rested with the entire 15-member Security Council and not with individual states.
"It's the Security Council that is party to the cease-fire, not (Britain) and (United States) individually, and therefore it is the council that has ownership of the cease-fire, in my interpretation."
His remarks will certainly anger British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who is under pressure to release pre-war legal advice he and his cabinet acted on. He has steadfastly refused.