WikiLeaks: Mubarak told US not to topple Saddam

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London, Feb.10 (ANI): Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is reported to have told former US vice-president Dick Cheney "three or four times" not to depose Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, according to diplomatic cables leaked by the whistle blowing web site WikiLeaks.

By ignoring his advice and invading Iraq, Mubarak had warned that the Americans had managed to increase the threat posed by Iran, The Telegraph reports.

Mubarak is said to have made the comments during a breakfast meeting with US congressmen at the presidential palace in Cairo in December 2008.

He told one of the delegation, Senator Byron Dorgan, that the US needed to "listen to its friends" in the region.

"When George Bush Senior was president, 'he listened to my advice. But his son does not'," he said, according to a US cable sent on January 14, 2009.

"'I told (Vice President) Cheney three or four times' that Iraq needed a strong leader and that it would be unwise to remove Saddam Hussein. Doing so would only 'open the gate to Iran."

Unfortunately, he said, the vice-president did not listen to his advice." (ANI)

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