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Senate Refusal on Iran Report Angers Reagan

January 06, 1987|United Press International

WASHINGTON — President Reagan is outraged and deeply disappointed that the Senate Intelligence Committee has refused to release its report on the Iran arms scandal, spokesman Larry Speakes said today.

The committee voted 7 to 6 late Monday not to release the 159-page report which, according to a Democratic source, said it was unlikely Reagan knew of the diversion of profits from arms sales to Iran to the contra rebels in Nicaragua. (Story, Page 6.)

Republican leader Bob Dole said today the GOP may try to get the confidential report released by offering an amendment to legislation creating a special Senate panel on the Iran arms-contra aid scandal.

Byrd Not Advised

Senate Democratic leader Robert C. Byrd of West Virginia said the Republicans had not told him about their strategy.

But he vowed, "I'm going to do everything I can to avoid it from becoming politicized. If such an amendment is offered, that in itself would be perceived as politicization. I hope it will not be offered."

The legislation was expected to be introduced shortly after the 100th Congress convened today, but the Republican complaints threatened speedy action on the measure.

Byrd opposed releasing the report on grounds that it was premature.

"The President is outraged, the President is deeply disappointed, the President is concerned that a committee of elected representatives in the U.S. Congress will not make available to the American people the facts they have gathered," Speakes said.

Administration View

Speakes said the Administration would not release information it provided to the panel, particularly a chronology of events written by fired national security aide Oliver L. North. He said the chronology "might contain errors in fact. . . . We were suspicious of it ourselves. Had we released it, it would have been deemed a self-serving document."

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