US President George W. Bush Monday gave Iraqi President Saddam Hussein an ultimatum to leave his country within 48 hours to avoid a war.
Bush made the remakrs during a prime-time televised address to the nation several hours after the United States, Britain and Spain withdrew the draft resolution on Iraq, which seeks UN authorization of use of force against Iraq.
He also asked UN inspectors and journalists to leave Iraq immediately.
Bush said his administration is determined to remove the threat posed by Saddam, who he said owns weapons of mass destruction.
He said Washington has to act as the UN Security Council has failed to live up to its responsibilities.
In his address, Bush also warned of terrorist operations facing the US troops.
Following Bush's speech, the US government raised the national terror alert to Orange, the second-highest level in a five-color assessment system, from yellow, the middle level, on Monday.