As I read it, the president is determined not to be forced into reductions that go against the trend of events. It would be rash to predict. I am sure there will be reductions, but the number will probably stay quite high.
We are very pleased that the United Kingdom will, for this first period of the force, be the lead nation. We have had several offers from other members of the U.N. to join in that force on the terms that we are now setting down in the [U.N. Security] Council.
It's really useful to talk these things through informally, without commitment, without being reported as your government position. I think the mutual understanding is growing, even if the mutual acceptance is not necessarily growing.
It is well established that the authorization to use force given by the Security Council in 1990 may be revived if the council decides that there has been a sufficiently serious breach of the conditions laid down by the council for the cease-fire.
There is only one reason for these continuing negotiations -- and that is to maximize the degree of consensus in the council. We are determined to bring this whole negotiation to closure in the next 24 hours.