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> The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Foreign and Commonwealth > Office (Baroness Symons of Vernham Dean): > Let us consider that the latest distribution plan put forward by Iraq on > the oil-for-food issue includes an allocation of 25 million dollars' worth > to a machine that will count banknotes and 100 million dollars' worth for > the purchase of telecommunications. That does not strike me as a regime > that is interested in the suffering of its own people. Whoops, Mrs Jay. I enclose the latest Distribution Plan on these two items. As apparent from below, the use of this money is will be monitored by UN observers to make sure it is helping with the distribution of food supplies. For a government which claims that food isn't getting where it should be, you'd think they'd be happy? As it's $25million for the entire banking sector: maybe Mrs Jay's conception of what banks do is rather limited? 65. The present state of telecommunication systems throughout Iraq is extremely poor. Apart from the wider social considerations, there are negative consequences for the efficient procurement and distribution of humanitarian supplies. The difficulty experienced by the Ministries involved in implementing the MOU when communicating with their suppliers has contributed to delays in ensuring timely submission of applications and subsequently in the delivery of supplies to Iraq. In the health sector, poor communications between warehouses and hospitals have contributed to delays in the collection of supplies by health facilities. The absence of adequate data links have also hindered the timely passing on of accurate information on requirements. In regard to the electricity sector, this has affected the coordination of operation between the source, the transmission stations and substations. In order to ensure a more effective implementation of the distribution plan and enhance utilisation of commodities imported, communications equipment is required. The first priority is Kimadiašs distribution system. 66. A provisional allocation of up to US$ 126 million, including US$ 25 million for banking requirements, is envisaged for this purpose. Out of this total US$18.7 million will be allocated for the three northern governorates. The annex gives one option for the establishment of a net work which would be available to all Ministries and facilities involved in procurement and distribution of goods supplied through the MOU. A range of technical options is still under consideration to ensure that the resources allocated to communications improvements in all relevant sectors, will provide the most effective logistic support. 66-1.Rehabilitation of existing Telecommunication infrastructure services are needed at this stage. The rate of unsuccessful telephone calls is extremely high at present due to the severe congestion in the telephone exchanges and the transmission systems. This due mainly to the large number of unrepaired exchanges and microwave radio stations due to lack of spare parts. The requirements presented here in the field of telecommunications has the following objectives: 66-2. Providing the necessary spare parts and other hardware needed to repair and maintain certain existing telecommunication systems. 66-3. replacement of damaged equipment in order to restore services to the areas that have severely limited telecommunication services . 66-4. A mobile and wireless telephone systems has been also included in the requirements for two main reasons. The first is to fulfill the urgent needs of the health and other humanitarian services, and the second is to act as a stop gap measure in some areas that have a very poor and severely damaged paper insulated copper subscriber networks or no networks at all. 67. The plan allocates US$ 126 million to meet the necessary urgent needs and requirements. Out of this total, US$ 18.7 million is allocated for three northern governorates. Annex-1, 2/communications shows this. 68. In accordance with paragraph 41 of the MOU, the Government of Iraq shall provide the Programme with detailed information about the delivery of supplies and equipment to their locations in order to facilitate the monitoring of their use and to make sure of this. The Programme will conduct the tasks provided for in paragraph 8 of annex-1 of the MOU. -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- 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