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RE: Potential basis for action in IDC Report on "The Future of Sa nctions"

Dear all,

While the 'after the sanctions' section in the report is interesting, as far
as I'm concerned the 'killer fact' in it is the following two paragraphs
from the summary:

"There is a clear consensus that the humanitarian and developmental
situation in Iraq has deteriorated seriously since the imposition of
comprehensive economic sanctions whilst, at the same time, sanctions have
clearly failed to hurt those responsible for past violations of
international law as Saddam Hussein and his ruling elite continue to enjoy a
privileged existence.

Not all this humanitarian distress is the direct result of the sanctions
regime. It appears that Saddam Hussein is quite prepared to manipulate the
sanctions regime and the exemptions scheme to his own ends, even if that
involves hurting ordinary Iraqi people. This does not, however, entirely
excuse the international community from a part in the suffering of Iraqis. A
sanctions regime which relies on the good faith of Saddam Hussein is
fundamentally flawed."

This seems to directly contradict the FCO line that it's all Saddam's fault.
The Select Cttee has admitted that the 'international community' (ie the
US/UK) bears some of the responsibility for the suffering. How much is 'a
part'? Perhaps wisely, they've decided not to define that more closely, but
if it's only 10% (and I cannot see how anyone can argue that it's less than
that  - and I know that many people would agree with me that it's a lot
more) then we're talking about a minimum of 30,000 dead children.

Chris Williams

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