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U.S. group brings $4 million of aid to Iraq 9 May 1998 BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Former U.S. Attorney General Ramsey Clark arrived in Baghdad Friday bringing $4 million worth of medical aid to sanctions-hit Iraqis. He was accompanied by 100 U.S. peace activists representing American humanitarian and human rights organizations. "We are here bringing nearly four million dollars worth of medicines ... trying to save children, the weak and the elderly," said Fred Champagne of U.S Veterans for Peace. "We are here to defy the U.S. sanctions against Iraq. We are in defiance of the American policy against starving the people of Iraq," he said. Clark said the visit was a reaction to last month's U.N. Security Council resolution prolonging the punitive sanctions imposed on Iraq after its 1991 invasion of Kuwait. "The message we carry is that the American people love the Iraqi people," Clark told reporters shortly after arriving in Baghdad. "It is painful to feel the ... suffering. This is a place which people ought to come and help." Clark has visited Iraq several times since the Gulf War and was a strong opponent of U.S. and allied air and missile attacks against Baghdad. Humanitarian aid to Iraq has been gaining momentum during the last few months. Some 18 planes have landed in Iraqi airports since the beginning of this year bringing medicines and food supplies to Iraqis after obtaining the approval of a U.N. sanctions committee. Last month a cargo plane from the aid organization AmeriCares landed in Baghdad with 38 tonnes of medical supplies, the first airlift of humanitarian aid from a U.S. relief group since the Gulf War. An Iraqi Trade Ministry source said the United States had put on hold several contracts to buy humanitarian goods under Iraq's "oil-for-food" deal with the United Nations. "The American representative at the (sanctions) committee suspended 12 food and medicine contracts at the beginning of this month," the source, quoted by state-run newspapers, said. The source said the blocked materials ranged from medicines bought from Syria and Jordan to electrical spare parts and utilities from Britain, Germany and Italy. -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To be removed/added, email email@example.com, NOT the whole list. Archived at http://linux.clare.cam.ac.uk/~saw27/casi/discuss.html