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Here are a couple of articles featuring Iraqi Oil minister Amer Mohammad Rashid. The first is a Stratfor commentary about Rashid's plan to bust sanctions limiting Iraqi oil production and the second is a recent call for the arrest of the same minister while he was in Vienna last week. Interesting that a week after the U.S. began making noises once again about war crimes indictments for Baath Party officials, one of the key architects of Baath chemical weapons attacks is able to travel freely to Europe. Ben Rempel **************************** Stratfor Commentary 2215 GMT, 990929 – Qurna Field May Help Entice Sanctions Busters Iraqi Oil Minister Amer Mohammad Rashid has announced that Iraq will not stop exporting oil after it reaches the cap imposed by the United Nations under the oil-for-food deal. Rashid made the comment at a news conference after his Russian counterpart, Viktor Kalyuzhny, arrived in Baghdad Sept. 28 to discuss development in one of the world’s largest oil fields. Iraq "would not wait for others to tell it to go ahead," Rashid said, but would continue to produce and export as much oil as possible, ignoring the $5.26 billion export cap. Kalyuzhny was visiting Iraq to finalize a deal for the development of the giant Qurna oil field in southern Iraq. He was the head of a 75-member delegation, mostly from the Russian oil company LUKoil, sent to discuss a proposed $3.7 billion production-sharing agreement. Qurna is regarded as one of the largest oil fields in the world, with reserves estimated at over 20 billion barrels. Seismic work, permitted under the sanctions, has reportedly already been completed at Qurna. However, the field’s development is forbidden while the sanctions are in place. Late last week, Iraq allegedly tried to push the issue, threatening to cancel all cooperation with LUKoil if the Russian government did not pressure the U.N. Security Council to lift sanctions. Iraq technically needs such Security Council approval to continue its current export rate, which will soon top the limit for the current period. The United Nations reported in mid-September that Iraqi oil exports had already reached $4 billion. It estimated that Iraqi exports during the six-month period ending in November were destined to bring overall oil export revenue to $7.077 billion, nearly $2 billion over the limit. So far, there have been no repercussions from Iraq’s behavior. Neither Washington nor London, generally hard-line sanction supporters, has made any public objection to the flaunting of U.N. quotas. Judging from the Qurna deal, Iraq may use this opportunity to entice foreign investors, sanctions or no. If Iraq can pull off this gambit, Saddam Hussein will have won a major victory through a simple fait accompli. firstname.lastname@example.org © 1998, 1999 Stratfor, Inc. All rights reserved. ****************** Another Iraqi War Crimes Suspect in Vienna Human Rights Alliance - Sep 24, 1999 URGENT ACTION An Iraqi war crimes suspect is in the Austrian capital. The former head of the Iraqi military industries and current Iraqi Oil Minister General ‘Amr Al Rashid is attending an OPEC meeting in Vienna. Last month, the Iraqi Vice President Izzat Ibrahim Al Duri, a war crimes suspect, escaped justice inVienna due to the laxness of the Austrian authorities. The undersigned NGOs participating in the OSCE review conference in Vienna call upon the Austrian authorities not to repeat that mistake. We urge them to hold General Al Rashid for investigation in connection with alleged war crimes, genocide and crimes against humanity. General Al Rashid is the architect of the Iraqi chemical and biological programs. Under his auspices, and in close collaboration with Saddam Hussein’s cousin,Ali Hassan Al Majid, known as "Ali chemical," the Iraqi military used cocktails of chemical and biological nerve and mustard agents against civilians. These included mustard gas, which burns, mutates DNA and causes malformations and cancer, and the nerve gases sarin and tabun, which kill, paralyse and cause immediate and lasting neuropsychiatric damage. In a series of attacks from 1987 to 1989, under the supervision of General Al Rashid the Iraqi army gassed over 200 Kurdish villages in Iraqi Kurdistan,including the city of Halabja on March 16, 1988. Thousands died immediately and more than 250,000 survivors continue to suffer from long-term effects. General Al Rashid allegedly also shares responsibility for the destruction of the Arab Marsh lands, mass executions, torture and forced expulsions, as well as the use of chemical weapons against the Kurdish population perpetrated by the government of Iraq in the notorious Anfal Campaign. Austria must show to the world that it is committed to the principle of universal jurisdiction. The crimes for which General Al Rashid should be charged are grave breaches of international law, in particular the Geneva Convention of 1925 on the prohibition of the use of chemical weapons in conflicts and the Genocide convention of 1948. We reiterate our request that the Austrian government should act immediately to arrest General Al Rashid and not allow impunity for anyone suspected of grave violations of international law. The Human Rights Alliance Human Rights Watch Federation Internationale des Ligues des Droits de l’homme (FIDH) Gesellschaft fuer bedrohte Volker International League for Human Rights Glasnost Foundation-Moscow Danish United Nations Association Association to Unite the Democracies Latvian Human Rights Committee Turkish Cypriots’ Human Rights Committee Human Rights Foundation of Turkey Tajik Center for information and Analyses on Human Rights Kyrgyz Committee for Human Rights Norwegian Forum for Freedom of Expression Norwegian Committee for Jews in ex-Soviet Union Civil Society Development- Armenia For further information contact: Bakhtiar Amin or Kathryn Porter, Human Rights Alliance, 444, North Capitol St., N.W. #837, Washington, D.C. 20001, Tel: +1 (202) 637-3277, Fax: +1 (202) 637-2563, EMAIL: HRA@CAIS.COM or Joe Stork, Human Rights Watch, Tel: +1 (202) 612-4327 or Reed Brody,Human Rights Watch Tel: + 44 (780) 372-3267 -- ------------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. 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