The following is an archived copy of a message sent to a Discussion List run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
Views expressed in this archived message are those of the author, not of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq.
[Main archive index/search] [List information] [Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]
News for 5 June '00 to 11 June '00 · Sources: AFP, AP, Baltimore Sun, BBC, Economist, Irish Times, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Progressive, Reuters, Startfor, Washington Post · Sanctions take a chilling toll (Opinion -- Irish Times) · Security Council Extends Oil-for-Food Program Allowing Iraq to Import Necessities (New York Times) · Arab-Americans Boo, Heckle U.S. Official on Iraq (Reuters) · Democrats Split Over Sanctions (Progressive) · Squabbling Over Iraqi Sanctions (Economist) · Qatar's Iraq Initiative Collapses Before Start (Reuters) · Euro MP Calls for End to Sanctions Against Iraq (Reuters) · Russia Criticizes U.S.-British Patrol Of Iraqi No-Fly Zones (AP) · Iran Reportedly Allows Iraqi Oil in Its Sea Lanes (Los Angeles Times) · Iran Opens Faucet for Smuggled Iraqi Oil (Baltimore Sun) · Why the Price of Oil Will Likely Remain High (Stratfor) · Iraq Says UN Mismanaging Oil-for-Food Program (AP) · Iraq Expects Poor 2000 Harvest Due to Drought (Reuters) · Vatican Voices Opposition to Iraq Embargo (AFP) · Iraq Worst Prepared for E-Business (Economist) Only links provided for the following reports: · Smuggled Iraqi Oil Flows Once More (Stratfor) · Iraq 'Steps Up Attacks on UK Pilots' (BBC) · Iraq Urges Arab League to Stop Turkish Assault (Reuters) · Italy Urges Iraq to Comply with U.N. Arms Control (Reuters) ________________________________________________________ · Democrats Split Over Sanctions, Progressive, 1 June '00 http://www.progressive.org/conn0600.htm Ruth Conniff is Washington Editor of The Progressive. The Word from Washington -- Ruth Conniff After nearly a decade of bombing and blockade, Iraq has been reduced from a prosperous society to a mass of poverty, suffering, and disease. More than a million Iraqi civilians have died, according to UNICEF, in the aftermath of the Persian Gulf War. Infrastructure and health care systems in the country have broken down. Raw sewage flows through the waterways, and epidemics of preventable diseases including malaria, typhoid, and cholera ravage the young. The humanitarian crisis and the seemingly endless stand-off between the United States and Saddam Hussein have prompted some members of Congress to call for a change in U.S. policy. In February, seventy members of the House of Representatives signed a letter to President Clinton asking that the Administration "delink" economic sanctions from the military sanctions against Iraq. "More than nine years of the most comprehensive economic embargo imposed in modern history has failed to remove Saddam Hussein from power or even ensured his compliance with international obligations, while the economy and people of Iraq continue to suffer," the letter states. "Morally, it is wrong to hold the Iraqi people responsible for the actions of a brutal and reckless government." The letter, sponsored by Representative John Conyers, Democrat of Michigan, and Representative Tom Campbell, Republican of California, garnered bipartisan support. Many members of the Progressive Caucus in the House of Representatives signed on, including Democrats David Bonior of Michigan, Cynthia McKinney of Georgia, Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, Peter DeFazio of Oregon, Jesse Jackson Jr. of Illinois, Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin, and Maxine Waters of California. In March, many of the same Representatives signed a bill that would allow humanitarian aid to flow more freely into Iraq. But not all progressive Democrats oppose the sanctions. As anti-sanctions pressure mounts, a pro-sanctions backlash has erupted. A letter drafted by Representatives Joseph Crowley, Democrat of New York, and John Sweeney, Republican of New York, urges the Administration not to budge on Iraq, and asserts that "Saddam Hussein is cynically . . . withholding available food and medicines from his own people to garner sympathy for an end to the sanctions." The pro-sanctions letter gathered 125 supporters, including Progressive Caucus members Tom Lantos, Democrat of California, Lane Evans, Democrat of Illinois, as well as New York Democrats Jerrold Nadler and Nita Lowey. What's going on here? "The U.N. oil-for-food program has given Saddam Hussein the opportunity to provide basic needs to his people, but he has squandered huge sums of money on arms and luxury goods," says Lowey. "I am horrified by the images of Iraqis who do not have enough food and shelter, but this is a product of tyrannical leadership, not U.N. sanctions. Lifting sanctions will only bolster Saddam Hussein's coffers and enable him to buy weapons of mass destruction--it will not help the Iraqi people." These are the same arguments made by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC)--the second most influential lobbying group in Washington, D.C., according to Fortune magazine. AIPAC has made the pro-sanctions campaign a top priority, urging members of Congress to sign the Crowley-Sweeney letter, and asserting that supporting sanctions on Iraq means supporting Israel. "Iraq is number one, in terms of immediate military threats to Israel," AIPAC spokesman Kenneth Bricker explains. "People are forgetting the purpose of sanctions, which is to prevent Iraq from getting its hands on hard currency. Whenever Saddam gets hard currency from oil revenues, he spends it on weapons of mass destruction." Khalil E. Jahshan, vice president of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee, which has been lobbying on the other side, is exasperated by the anti-Saddam argument. "Since the beginning of the Gulf war, with the demonization of Iraq, somehow Iraq has been reduced to Saddam Hussein, as if twenty-two million Iraqi people did not exist," Jahshan says. "This allowed for an insensitivity or at least a passivity from the far left to the far right." But Jahshan is hopeful: "We are beginning to see a reversal of that attitude, and some sort of intelligent debate, for the first time since 1991." Among the most vocal early supporters of sanctions on the left was Representative Barney Frank, Democrat of Massachusetts. In his 1992 book, Speaking Frankly: What's Wrong with the Democrats and How to Fix It (Times Books), Frank offered advice on how to buff the Democrats' image. He recommended shaking off the scruffy, 1960s anti-war image and supporting a kind of "progressive" militarism. "Those of us who disagree with the left's rejection of America's moral right to use force in the world must speak out more vigorously lest our candidates find themselves isolated on the left," Frank wrote. Frank spoke out vigorously a year and a half ago when I encountered him on a Stairmaster at a Washington, D.C., gym, watching live footage of the bombing of Iraq. "This is the worst of the left!" he snapped at me when I asked him whether bombing and starving Iraqi civilians wasn't brutal and ineffective. "What would you do? Send in more American ground troops to be killed?" Frank backed the Clinton Administration's program of containing Saddam Hussein through a campaign of sanctions and periodic bombings: "So we'll bomb him again, every so often, and prevent him from getting weapons of mass destruction." As for the civilian costs: "That's his fault." Recently, Frank's position has softened a bit. He refused to sign either of the letters on sanctions that are circulating. "I'm for modifying but not completely lifting the sanctions," he says. "This is one of the most vicious regimes in the world. We shouldn't just back down. . . . But I think the sanctions have been administered unfairly. I want to loosen them, and maximize the chance that he can buy food and civilian equipment." Another Democrat who has been rethinking his position on Iraq is the dovish, leftwing Representative from Ohio Tony Hall. Hall visited Iraq in April to take a look at the devastating effect of sanctions. The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and Peace Action praised Hall for his public statements deploring the calamity in Iraq upon his return. But the groups' press releases ignored Hall's conclusion: that sanctions should not be lifted. "We expected when he came back he would be opposing the sanctions," says Hall staffer Deborah DeYoung. "He is against sanctions in North Korea, and he's fed up with sanctions against Cuba. In general, he doesn't think they work, and they hurt the poor." Despite all that, Hall says he can't support the proposal to "delink" the civilian and military blockades on Iraq. "Iraq's people are suffering terribly, and it was heartbreaking to see their pain firsthand," Hall said when he returned to Washington from his trip. "But, like the majority of American citizens, I remain concerned about the military threat Iraq continues to pose to its neighbors and the world, and convinced that until progress is made on eliminating weapons of mass destruction, lifting sanctions would be irresponsible." Hall felt "manipulated" by his Iraqi hosts, and he essentially agreed with AIPAC that Saddam Hussein is using the horrible plight of his people for his own political ends. "I wish that I could support lifting sanctions," Hall said. "Many religious leaders, aid workers, and other people I respect oppose them. I am troubled, though, that some opponents of sanctions don't focus as much attention on Iraq's government as I believe they should." The Iraqi government could make more of a good-faith effort, Hall believes. "It was apparent from the moment he got there that everything, including the people's suffering, was part of a campaign to end sanctions," DeYoung says. "At one hospital in Baghdad, looking at admittedly terrible suffering, the Iraqi guides made the point that the children there have to sleep two to a bed, that there are not enough beds for them. And while they were talking, a member of the staff slipped away down the hall, and saw rooms and rooms of empty beds." Stunts like that aside, Hall has no doubt that UNICEF's dire estimates of infant mortality, malnutrition, and disease are accurate. The heart of the problem, according to Hall, is not the sanctions, but the stalemate between the United States government and Iraq. He condemned racism , a trigger-happy U.S. policy, and belligerence on both sides. Instead of lifting or "delinking" economic and military sanctions, Hall proposes streamlining relief efforts. He points out that the United Nations stops huge shipments of food and medicine from going to Iraq because as little as 10 percent of the items in a shipment might be used for building weapons. The bureaucratic culture of the oil-for-food program encourages such bottlenecks by rewarding the discovery of possible "dual uses" and holding up shipments of items such as chlorine--which is essential for water purification--because it could be used to make chlorine gas. "If you find a kidney machine gizmo also works as a nuclear trigger, you're the toast of the town," says DeYoung. "If you just approve the pencil shipment, you get no credit." Manipulation by the Iraqi government also doesn't account for the uneven distribution of oil-for-food relief, according to former U.N. humanitarian coordinator Hans von Sponeck. Von Sponeck recently became the second U.N. official to resign from the program, protesting the sanctions on Iraq. The oil-for-food program currently totals only $177 per person, per year, according to Von Sponeck, and food relief alone simply cannot make up for a devastated infrastructure. "Lifting sanctions is the only realistic way to end the human catastrophe in Iraq, rebuild the economy, get people back to work, and reestablish health care, education, electric power, clean water, sanitation, agriculture, oil production levels, and fix other sectors," says Denis Halliday, the first U.N. humanitarian coordinator for Iraq who resigned in protest in 1998. Because of the U.N. officials' protests, and the efforts of peace activists, the devastation suffered by the people of Iraq is getting more attention now than it has received in a decade. Even if efforts to lift the sanctions are not successful, some sort of reform of the U.N.'s relief effort seems likely. "Grassroots activism to lift the economic sanctions on Iraq is definitely on the rise," says Fran Teplitz of Peace Action. "Given the dismal situation in Iraq, there is no room for optimism," says Jahshan. "But at least there is some movement, and an emerging public opinion that is dissatisfied with the failed long-term policy." ________________________________________________________ · Sanctions take a chilling toll, Opinion -- Irish Times, 6 June '00 http://www.ireland.com/newspaper/opinion/2000/0606/op5.htm Niall Andrews has been an MEP representing Dublin since 1984. The UN sanctions are causing unnecessary hardship in Iraq, argues Niall Andrews The case for lifting the vast majority of UN sanctions currently imposed against Iraq is compelling. It is now 10 years since the United Nations first imposed sanctions against the Iraqi government. This was in direct retaliation for the invasion of Kuwait by the forces of Saddam Hussein. There was widespread global support in 1990 for tough measures to be imposed against the Iraqi government. Dialogue alone was not going to liberate Kuwait and return the semblance of stability to the region. One of the first measures to be passed by the United Nations on August 6th, 1990, was known as resolution 661. This initiated the ban on exports of technical and scientific books to Iraq by third countries. Put in more stark terms, it started the process of cutting off new medical information. The last 10 years have witnessed a deterioration in the standard of the health services in Iraq that beggars belief. The infrastructure of the 130 hospitals in the country is simply collapsing. These hospitals have not received the necessary repairs or maintenance so as to be in a position to provide even an adequate standard of healthcare. In some Iraqi hospitals, raw sewage is dripping into operating theatres. UNICEF and the International Committee of the Red Cross have been able to provide the outside world with more chilling statistics about the effect of the UN sanctions regime in Iraq: Infant mortality has doubled in the country. Some 500,000 children have died in Iraq since the Gulf War. A third of all children under the age of five have serious malnutrition. There will be little change in these chilling statistics of human suffering as long as UN sanctions are still in operation. The basic infrastructure needs of the country will have to be substantially improved if we are to reverse the social and economic decline. Basic water and sanitation services need to be urgently upgraded. Half of the rural population in Iraq do not have access to any adequate supplies of clean drinking water. If UN sanctions were designed to bring the Iraqi government to heel on disputed outstanding international matters, they have not succeeded in that objective. They have led to the collapse of the whole infrastructure of the country, which will take decades to rebuild. They have forced unemployment to rise to 60 per cent. UN sanctions have hit at the most vulnerable in Iraqi society. This includes children, young people, pregnant women, the elderly and people with chronic diseases. There is a growing international concern that the sanctions regime against Iraq must be completely reevaluated. I do not want to see the Iraqi government being given an opportunity to rebuild its armed forces. The track record of this government is wholly belligerent, to say the least. However, the UN food for oil programme has not improved the humanitarian problems in the country. It has not halted the collapse of the health system and the deterioration of water supplies, which together pose one of the gravest threats to the health and well-being of the civilian population. I met many civilian and NGO groupings in Iraq during my seven-day political visit to the country. I also met Iraqi Foreign Minister Mr Tariq Aziz, who sought the support of the three MEPS on the delegation for a lifting of UN sanctions. I supported the request that the vast majority of these sanctions should be abolished as soon as possible. I support this political position, not as a means to bolster the regime of the Iraqi government, but as an international mechanism to help the weakest in Iraqi society. I intend to open up a full round of discussions with the European Commission and with all the political groups in the European Parliament on this matter. It is an imperative that a consensus is built up in Europe that many of the UN sanctions in place against the Iraqi Government be rescinded. EU decision-makers have a moral obligation to force progress on this issue - before the human suffering in Iraq reaches even more calamitous heights. ________________________________________________________ · Iran Reportedly Allows Iraqi Oil in Its Sea Lanes, Los Angeles Times, 6 June '00 http://www.latimes.com/news/asection/20000606/t000053546.html By ROBIN WRIGHT, Times Staff Writer TEHRAN -- In an unexpected reversal, Iran has opened its protected sea lanes to dozens of ships carrying illegal shipments of Iraqi oil in violation of U.N. sanctions on Saddam Hussein's government, U.S. officials said Monday. The Clinton administration considers the about-face alarming because oil smuggling is Hussein's only major source of independent income. U.S. officials have estimated that unfettered access to Iranian waters could generate as much as $1 billion for his regime this year. For about two months, Iran had refused to allow ships carrying contraband Iraqi oil to sail along its coastline beyond the reach of U.N. and U.S. ships deployed to enforce the embargo. But Thursday, a wave of oil-laden ships moved into Iranian waters in what one senior U.S. official likened to "a jailbreak." "There was a huge backlog of ships full of smuggled oil that couldn't move into the [Persian] Gulf because Iran had kept them bottled up," said the official, who declined to be identified. "Then, suddenly, on Thursday they all set sail." U.S. officials said they are mystified by Iran's apparent policy shift, noting that Tehran had been widely lauded for the spirit of cooperation it displayed over the previous two months. Besides the obvious boost to Iraq's finances, the administration is concerned about the diplomatic implications of Iran's turnabout. Iran's clampdown on Iraqi oil shipments coincided with a U.S. overture lifting sanctions on exports of Iranian carpets, pistachios and caviar. Washington had hoped that Tehran's move to curtail smuggling was a reciprocal gesture signaling interest in warmer relations after two decades of open hostility. After the ships were detected in Iran's sea lanes Thursday, the United States and other countries made urgent appeals to Tehran through diplomatic channels to stop the traffic. Those requests were confirmed Monday by Iran's Foreign Ministry. "They informed us that one or two ships had been seized, and asked us to seize the rest. We passed the information immediately to our military authorities, as it is our policy to seize all vessels carrying Iraqi oil," Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif told The Times. Zarif said about two dozen ships were involved. American officials, however, said the figure is considerably higher. The problem for Iran involves logistics, not political will, said Zarif, citing the more than 600 miles of Iranian coastline along the gulf. "We told the United Nations that we would respond to the best of our ability but that we also need international assistance," Zarif said. "This is a costly and difficult exercise considering the vast area involved." According to U.S. officials, the illegal oil shipments are now passing through Iranian waters with no apparent impediments. The oil-laden ships have sailed under a number of flags, including those of Russia, Honduras, Belize, Panama and some Mideast countries. As long as they remain within 12 miles of Iran's coastline, they are outside the jurisdiction of U.N. and U.S. ships enforcing the embargo. It is easier for ships to evade U.S. and U.N. monitors once they get farther down the gulf. Under U.N. sanctions, Iraq is allowed to export as much crude oil as it can produce, but only under the auspices of a U.N.-monitored "oil-for-food" program. Funds generated by the approved shipments are distributed by the United Nations to purchase humanitarian supplies for Iraqi citizens. But Hussein's government has generated a separate stream of illicit income for itself by selling smuggled oil and refined petroleum products to foreign buyers. U.S. officials said such sales have been his only significant source of funds to spend on weapons programs, luxury goods or other non-humanitarian purchases. To avoid the U.N. blockade, sanctions-busting ships have loaded contraband oil in the Iraqi port of Abu Flus, then sailed through the narrow Shatt al Arab waterway to the gulf, according to U.S. officials. Before entering the gulf, the ships passed through a checkpoint run by Iran's Revolutionary Guards, who charged a fee based on the quantity of oil the ships were carrying, U.S. officials contend. That practice was halted two months ago when Iran decided to shut down the coastal smuggling route, but it appears to have resumed, U.S. officials said. U.S. officials have said they are not certain whether the smuggling has been condoned by officials in Tehran, or whether it has been a rogue operation. It is unclear whether the Revolutionary Guards are within the full control of President Mohammad Khatami, who, under Iran's Islamic government, is not commander in chief. ________________________________________________________ · Qatar's Iraq Initiative Collapses Before Start, Reuters, 7 June '00 http://abcnews.go.com/wire/World/reuters20000607_901.html DOHA -- A Qatari proposal for a regional initiative to help lift sanctions against Iraq appears to have collapsed due to lack of support from other Gulf Arab states, officials said on Wednesday. "It seems it (the proposal) is dead before it could take off because of the reluctance of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait to talk to Iraq," one Qatari official told Reuters. Qatar proposed its idea on Saturday to its partners in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) which also includes Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain. Qatar also presented the proposal at a meeting in Cairo on Monday of the six Gulf Arab states with Syria and Egypt. The eight nations which joined the U.S.-led Gulf War coalition that ended Iraq's seven-month occupation of Kuwait in 1991 declared backing for the Iraqi people at the end of their talks but made no mention of efforts to ease the U.N. sanctions. The Qatari official said Egypt and Syria blocked any discussion on the proposal. FEW SUPPORTERS FOR PROPOSAL "There were few supporters. The Egyptians and Syrians blocked even a discussion on the proposals and the meeting ended with the routine call on Iraq to abide by all U.N. resolutions, without a reference to the Qatari proposal," the official said. Saudi Arabia's Defence Minister Prince Sultan said on Tuesday the kingdom would only support a lift of sanctions on Iraq if Baghdad complied with U.N. Security Council resolutions. He made his comments on Tuesday night in answer to a question on Iraqi accusations this week that Kuwait and Saudi Arabia had stifled the Qatari proposal. Kuwait and Saudi Arabia have in the past resisted calls for the lifting of the U.N. embargo imposed on Iraq for its August 1990 invasion of Kuwait. They maintain that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein was to blame for the human suffering of his people and refuse to deal directly with an Iraq ruled by him. Other Gulf Arab states have preserved or rehabilitated ties with Iraq to some extent. Bahrain and the UAE reopened diplomatic missions in Baghdad recently while Qatar and Oman have continued to host an Iraqi ambassador. All six are united in their call on Iraq to comply with all U.N. resolutions, but have expressed deep concern at the human suffering the sanctions have inflicted. Qatari officials would not give details of the proposed regional initiative, but indicated that the release of prisoners of war (POWs), held in Iraq since the Gulf War, could be a starting point for dialogue. "Other vital issues, like disarmament and weapons inspection, are between the international community and Iraq, but the release of POWs, in our view, could be a bilateral issue and could be resolved by dialogue regionally," said another Qatari official. "It could be a starting point," he added. Qatar is a small state in the region but it is seen a maverick among its conservative allies and had in the past vexed its partners for forging trade ties with Israel and moving faster than others in normalising ties with Iraq and Iran. It also went against the tide in 1999 when it criticised U.S. and British air strikes against Iraq's no-fly zones. ________________________________________________________ · Euro MP Calls for End to Sanctions Against Iraq, Reuters, 7 June '00 http://abcnews.go.com/wire/World/reuters20000607_1870.html BRUSSELS -- A member of the European Parliament urged the United Nations on Wednesday to abandon sanctions against Iraq after a fact-finding mission to the country. Bashir Khanbhai, a British member of the conservative European People's Party, added his voice to a growing number of critics of the embargo on most trade, imposed on Iraq after it invaded Kuwait in 1990. Khanbhai told Reuters the sanctions had brought misery on ordinary Iraqis, who 10 years ago had been the "envy of the Middle East," and had failed to weaken President Saddam Hussein. "A separate rule has been applied to Iraq. No other country has been subjected to such a humiliation as Iraq has been through these sanctions," Khanbhai said. He praised countries such as France for seeking leniency for Iraq and urged the European Union to take the lead in establishing a dialogue with Saddam to "persuade rather than bully" him into cooperation on making Iraq more democratic. Khanbhai led a group of three members of the European Parliament to Iraq last week which also included Irishman Niall Andrews and Italian Luisa Morgantini. The EU is the largest international donor to Iraq. Last month it approved an 8.6 million euro ($8.22 million) humanitarian aid programme to supply mostly drugs and medical equipment. . . . . . ($1-1.046 Euro) ________________________________________________________ · Iran Opens Faucet for Smuggled Iraqi Oil, Baltimore Sun, 7 June '00 http://www.sunspot.net/content/news/story?section=news&pagename=story&storyi d=1150340225222 Gulf transit picks up from a trickle in May By Tom Bowman and Jay Hancock Sun National Staff WASHINGTON -- After a stiff, two-month crackdown on illegal Iraqi oil shipments in the Persian Gulf, Iran is allowing renewed smuggling activity, puzzling U.S. officials who had hoped to extinguish a key financing source for Saddam Hussein's weapons programs. "The activity's picked up again in the last two weeks," said U.S. Navy Cmdr. Jeff Gradeck, a spokesman for the gulf-based allied naval force that is enforcing the United Nations trade sanctions against Iraq. "Why [Iran has] opened it up and to what extent I don't know." Iranian complicity is crucial for the shipment of illegal Iraqi oil through the Persian Gulf. By staying within Iran's 12-mile-wide territorial waters along the gulf's northern and eastern shoreline, smugglers are safe from allied ships seeking illegal cargo. Tehran's exact role in the renewed shipments was unclear yesterday. But the fresh activity after a two-month lull has worried U.S. officials. "Of course that concerns us," said P. J. Crowley, spokesman for the White House National Security Council. "We have conveyed our concern ... to Iran that it is their responsibility to enforce the sanctions regime that is in place." U.S. officials were still analyzing the new activity yesterday and were uncertain as to whether it is likely to continue. But any increase in smuggling is disturbing, they said, because it bolsters the pariah regime of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein. "This is a critical influx of capital that he would rely on," said a State Department official. "It allows him to take part in all his illicit activities: funding terrorism, pursuit of weapons of mass destruction, building his own palaces." Earlier this year, Iraq was shipping upwards of 3 million barrels of illegal oil per month, most of it through Iranian territorial waters, according to Pentagon officials. But smuggling fell to only 1.1 million barrels during May after Iran closed its coastline to smugglers. "It slowed to a trickle" in May and picked up again only in the past 10 days, as allied ships boarded 29 vessels and found that four were carrying illegal oil, Gradeck said. Iran denied that it has relaxed its vigilance and said in explanation of the renewed flow of illegal oil that it is unable to stop every illegal vessel. "There has not been any change in policy in Iran's position regarding the implementation of United Nations sanctions on Iraq," said Hossein Nosrat, a spokesman for Iran's mission to the United Nations in New York. "We, to the best of our ability, will continue to take all necessary measures in this regard." Iraq has denied that illegal oil shipments take place. A spokesman for the country's mission to the United Nations said yesterday that Iraq would have no immediate comment on reports of renewed illicit sales. Smuggling enables Iraq to collect oil revenues without going through a strictly controlled U.N. program that requires the proceeds to be spent on food and medicine for the Iraqi people. U.N. sanctions, imposed after Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990 and adjusted several times since then, prohibit sales that don't go through this "oil for food" program. The proceeds from illegal shipments are spent on weapons development, terrorism and the repressive internal measures that help maintain Hussein's hold on power, said U.S. officials and Middle East policy analysts. Smuggling in the Persian Gulf skyrocketed last fall and continued at a high level through March, according to U.S. officials, as Iraqi leader Hussein took advantage of rising oil prices. Hussein was on track to reap more than $1 billion this year from smuggling, U.S. officials said. But two months ago, illegal shipments plummeted as Tehran announced it would mount "intensified operations" to stop smugglers. The amount of smuggled oil through the gulf dropped by almost half in April and by two-thirds in May, officials said. "The Iranian government decided not to support that trade," said Leo Drollas, deputy director at the London-based Center for Global Energy Studies. "They thought the spotlight was on them, and they wanted to draw back from it. Plus, the U.S. Navy has been more active in the gulf." In an official Iranian government radio broadcast - "Voice of the Islamic Republic" - in April, an announcer said Iranian naval forces had seized 10 ships carrying 45,000 metric tons of illicit Iraqi oil and noted that "some middlemen" were profiting from the trade. The broadcast did not mention that the middlemen include the Iranian Revolutionary Guards, who pick up an estimated $50 per metric ton as a passage fee from the smugglers, Pentagon officials said. Iraq would receive $95 per metric ton from the smugglers, Pentagon spokesman Kenneth Bacon estimated in April. About $60 per metric ton would go into the pockets of the smugglers by the time the oil was sold for $205 per metric ton in the United Arab Emirates, India or Pakistan. A metric ton equals 7.3 barrels of oil. As recently as May 25, the Iranian crackdown was still in force as Revolutionary Guards halted a Belize-registered tanker carrying 1,400 tons of fuel oil at the entrance to the gulf, Iran's official news agency reported, saying the Guards would continue its patrols "to implement U.N. resolutions." The State Department took credit for the change in Iranian policy, saying Tehran moved after the United States produced evidence suggesting that smuggling was having a destabilizing influence on Iran. "It was made clear to Iran that this smuggling was being used by Saddam Hussein for his own purposes, including funding for ... a terrorist group which targets Iran," said a State Department official. But the seesaw fortunes of Persian Gulf oil smugglers may also reflect changing relations between Tehran and Baghdad or political developments inside Iran, Middle East specialists said. "One of the things to keep in mind is that the government of Iran is really different from the government of Iraq," said Jon B. Alterman, a Middle East analyst for the U.S. Institute of Peace, a government-funded think tank. "The government of Iraq is tightly controlled from the center. The government of Iran is made of many parties who don't have the same views and sometimes work at cross-purposes." ________________________________________________________ · Why the Price of Oil Will Likely Remain High, Stratfor, 8 June '00 http://www.stratfor.com/SERVICES/giu2000/060800.ASP Summary Iraq will soon increase oil exports by 700,000 barrels per day, reopening the previously damaged Khor al-Omaia oil terminal. However, illegal Iraqi oil exports depend on Iranian cooperation to find their way to the open waters of the Persian Gulf. As a result, Tehran will soon use its newfound leverage to influence decisions on production and prices at the upcoming meeting of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). If Tehran gets its way, the price of oil will hover at the comparatively high price of about $28 per barrel. Analysis Rafid al-Diboni, director general of Iraq's state-run Southern Oil Company, told the Al-Ilam newspaper June 7 that two of four loading quays at Khor al-Omaia oil terminal have been repaired and will resume operations ''soon.' ' Located just west of Iraq's main oil terminal at Mina al-Bakr, Khor al-Omaia was virtually destroyed in the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war and damaged again in the 1991 Gulf War. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), repairs began in 1993. When the terminal is fixed, its capacity will near 1.2 million barrels per day (bpd). With two of four loading quays reportedly repaired, Khor al-Omaia should be able to boost exports by 600,000 to 700,000 barrels each day. With current Iraqi production around 2.6 million barrels, such an increase would put Iraq's output near 3.2 -- 3.3 million bpd -- close to pre-Gulf War levels. Iraq clearly timed its announcement in advance of the next OPEC meeting in Vienna, Austria, in two weeks. There the cartel will decide whether to raise production and lower prices, now at about $28 per barrel. Baghdad probably made its announcement in the hope of swaying the cartel not to raise production quotas; the Iraqi regime is not subject to quotas because of U.N. sanctions dating back to the Gulf War, and Baghdad favors limiting production and propping up prices. Oil smuggling accounts for nearly all of the country's revenues beyond the ceiling set by the U.N. oil-for-food program. Iraq is effectively threatening to single-handedly affect the world price of oil. At the June 21 meeting, OPEC members will have to deal with the threat of increased Iraqi oil production. Whether Iraq's claim is true or false, it must be dealt with as a legitimate possibility. A 700,000 bpd increase by Iraq would equal half of the increase -- 1.4 million bpd -- that OPEC members agreed to in March. But Baghdad is not in control of its own oil shipments. Iraq's archrival, Iran, controls routes to the Persian Gulf. U.S. Navy Vice Adm. Charles Moore, coordinator of the U.S.-led Maritime Interdiction Force, has said that Iran facilitated Iraqi oil smuggling. Two months ago, Tehran suddenly ceased cooperation and began seizing tankers. But on June 1, the Iranian regime apparently resumed its tacit cooperation with smugglers, allowing them to traverse coastal waters. Iran has already demonstrated its willingness to use Iraqi smuggling to its own political benefit, in both relations with OPEC and with the United States. Iran opposed OPEC's March decision to increase production and stabilize prices. Tehran began seizing tankers shortly after the last OPEC meeting, where it withdrew from the cartel's agreement. The cartel's success has depended upon forging a strong political consensus among competing members. Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, along with non-member Mexico, spearheaded the production cuts of March 1999 that, in turn, led to the highest oil prices since the Gulf War. But since Iraq and Iran distanced themselves from the cartel's March decision, OPEC has begun to fracture. The cartel's ability to secure consensus has been severely damaged. Iran will come to Vienna ready to throw its weight around. Iraq wants to export as much oil as possible -- that is a given. But Iran effectively controls the level of Iraqi exports. Therefore, the announcement of a potential increase in Iraq's export capacity effectively gives Iran considerably more influence in negotiations with OPEC. It allows Tehran to speak with the weight of two countries' export capacities behind it. And if Tehran gets its way, as is likely, production increases will be minimal -- and the price of oil will stay high in the months to come. ________________________________________________________ · Arab-Americans Boo, Heckle U.S. Official on Iraq, Reuters, 9 June '00 http://abcnews.go.com/wire/Politics/reuters20000609_3263.html ARLINGTON, Va. -- Arab-Americans booed and heckled a senior State Department official on Friday when he tried to defend U.N. sanctions against Iraq at the annual convention of the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee. Over formal lunch at a hotel in the Washington area, guest speaker and Under Secretary of State Thomas Pickering angered the audience by saying sanctions against Iraq must continue. Delegates began banging their plates and booing, disrupting the speech for several minutes. One heckler shouted, "Shame, shame on you! How dare you? You want to kill the kids of Iraq. What kind of a human being are you?" A group of women shouted, "Get out!" and "Let the children live!" They then walked out for the rest of the speech, which Pickering eventually resumed. Pickering said, "I can understand your depth of feeling but I should at least have an opportunity to present a point of view I truly believe in... We should each have an opportunity to listen to each other without rancor or clamor." The official, who ranks third in the State Department hierarchy and has been U.S. ambassador to Jordan and Israel, also faced hostile questions on the Arab-Israeli conflict and the regular bombing of Iraq by U.S. and British warplanes. To applause, Palestinian-American Ziad Mughraby said, "You stand there representing the most fascist Zionist administration (Israel) in Washington, D.C., now lecture about (Iraqi President) Saddam Hussein. What about Israel? What about what happened to the Palestinians, to the Lebanese?" Pickering replied, "I recognize the deep-seated sense of grief, hurt and disturbance and worse that people feel for what has happened to them in the Middle East and beyond. "I cannot deal with the past. I can only help with the future. I am determined to do that." It was the first time a State Department official addressed the annual convention of the Anti-Discrimination Committee, which is one of the largest Arab-American organizations in the United States. OIL-FOR-FOOD PROGRAM Later, U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan received a warm welcome from the group. In his speech, which touched on the issue of Iraq, he urged Baghdad to comply with Security Council resolutions, which call for Iraq to allow U.N. arms inspectors back into the country. "My fervent hope is that Iraq will decide to comply fully with Security Council resolutions and thus open a new chapter in its relations with the international community," Annan said. Annan pointed out, however, that the sanctions had hurt Iraq and worsened its humanitarian crisis. "As an unintended consequence, what is certain and tragic is that it has held back Iraq's development -- economic, social and probably political as well." Another U.S. official, deputy Middle East peace mediator Aaron Miller, will probably go ahead with plans to speak to a convention panel on Saturday, an official said. In defense of sanctions against Iraq, Pickering said that because of the oil-for-food program, lifting the sanctions would not lead to dramatic change for the people of Iraq. Iraq says millions of children have died over the years because of the sanctions, imposed in 1990 after Iraq invaded Kuwait. The United Nations set new conditions for lifting sanctions after Iraqi forces were driven out in 1991. Pickering said, "Lifting sanctions would free Saddam to rebuild his military and his weapons of mass destruction programs but would not give any guarantee of either money or a better life for the average Iraqi." He repeated allegations that the Iraqi government has deliberately obstructed the distribution of food and medicines in Iraq to make propaganda out of the suffering. For example, Iraq long ignored U.N. calls that it order special foods for needy people and refused to distribute medicines worth $250 million from its warehouses until public pressure was brought to bear, he said. Under the oil-for-food program, Iraq sold oil worth $8.4 billion in the last six-month phase and the annual rate is expected to be $20 billion, he added. . . . . . In a gesture of good will to the Arab-American community, Pickering invited young members of the community to join the foreign service as U.S. diplomats. The State Department, which says it is committed to ethnic diversity, has set up a recruitment stall at the convention. ________________________________________________________ · Russia Criticizes U.S.-British Patrol Of Iraqi No-Fly Zones, AP, 9 June ' 00 http://www.foxnews.com/world/060900/uniraq.sml By Nicole Winfield UNITED NATIONS -- What should have been a perfunctory Security Council vote to extend the U.N. humanitarian program in Iraq erupted into acrimonious debate early Friday, with Russia criticizing sanctions and U.S. and British airstrikes against Iraq. Russian Ambassador Sergey Lavrov took the floor of the council chamber three times, delivering a bristling critique of the sanctions, the air patrols and the council's overall failure to solve the Iraq crisis after 10 years. "We're trying to deal with the symptoms -- to ease the symptoms of the disease -- but we're not dealing with the crux of the problem," Lavrov said in a rambling, off-the-cuff speech. He was joined in his criticism by deputy Chinese ambassador Shen Guofang, who decried the impact of the airstrikes but expressed some optimism that a study the council authorized Thursday night would assess the humanitarian impact that the strikes have caused. The United States and Britain have been enforcing northern and southern no-fly zones in Iraq since the end of the Persian Gulf War to protect Shiite Muslims in the south and Kurds in the north from Iraq's army. The allies say their regular aerial attacks hit only military targets, but Iraq often claims civilians are injured or killed. "These bombings have caused suffering," Shen said. The debate came during discussion on a resolution to keep the U.N. relief program, due to expire at midnight, running for another six months. . . . . . The new resolution also allows Iraq to spend $600 million from its oil sales on spare parts for its oil industry and lets it buy water and sanitation equipment without approval from the council's sanctions committee. In Cairo, Iraq's trade minister said the oil-for-food program was doing little to help the Iraqi people. Out of $29 billion earned since the program began in 1996, Iraq has access to only $7 billion, the rest set aside for paying U.N. expenses in Iraq or compensation to Gulf War victims, Mohammed Mehdi Saleh said. The program has "failed to ease the suffering of the Iraqi people, and Iraq now calls it the oil-for-U.N. expenses" program, the minister said, quoted by Egypt's Middle East News Agency. . . . . . British Ambassador Jeremy Greenstock said the no-fly zone patrols were authorized under resolutions calling for the protection of Iraqi minorities. And the deputy American ambassador, James Cunningham, said it was "disingenuous" to suggest that the limited airstrikes impact the overall humanitarian situation in Iraq. ________________________________________________________ · Vatican Voices Opposition to Iraq Embargo, AFP, 9 June '00 VATICAN CITY -- The Vatican remains opposed to the international embargo against Iraq, The Holy See's Secretary of State, Cardinal Angelo Sodano, told visiting Iraqi parliamentary speaker Saadoun Hammadi on Friday. The two leaders discussed the situation in Iraq and "notably the negative effect of the sanctions on people's lives," Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro Valls said after the meeting. Sodano and Vatican Foreign Minister Jean-Louis Tauran broached "everything Pope John Paul II and the Holy See has done for Iraq, since the start of the Gulf War until today," said Navarro Valls. John Paul II has repeatedly made it clear that he opposes the embargo, warning that such sanctions generally hit people much harder than any given country's leadership which is targeted by the measure. The Holy See is "very close to the Iraqi people because of their suffering," the spokesman cited the cardinal as saying. Hammadi's visit marks a resumption of contacts between Baghdad and the Holy See after Iraq requested in December that the pope postpone plans for a visit because of the embargo and the existence of no-fly zones which British and US warplanes have enforced over Iraq since the 1991 Gulf War. . . . . . Iraq is home to around one million Christians among its population of 22 million, most of them members of the Chaldean Catholic Church. The pope, who visited Egypt, Israel and the Palestinian territories earlier this year. still plans to make the trip to Iraq but no date has been announced. ________________________________________________________ · Iraq Worst Prepared for E-Business, Economist, 9 June '00 http://www.economist.com/editorial/freeforall/current/index_bw6628.html A survey of readiness for e-business, carried out by the Economist Intelligence Unit, a sister organisation of The Economist, puts America at the head of the field. Countries were assessed by their general business environment and communications infrastructure. Nordic countries occupy the next three slots; Japan is the lowest-ranked G7 country, in 21st position. Dot.com entrepreneurs should avoid Iraq, which came last out of 60 countries. ________________________________________________________ · Security Council Extends Oil-for-Food Program Allowing Iraq to Import Necessities, New York Times, 10 June '00 http://www.nytimes.com/library/world/global/061000un-iraq.html By BARBARA CROSSETTE UNITED NATIONS -- With Iraqi profits from oil sales now at record-high levels, the Security Council has extended the "oil-for-food" program for another six months to allow the imports of food, medicine and other civilian necessities. During this period, a new arms inspection system will be readied to go into action in Iraq, the chief inspector said on Thursday, challenging Iraq to take advantage of a more lenient set of requirements for suspending economic sanctions imposed after Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990. . . . . . In debate before a vote near midnight on Thursday, the deadline for the oil-sales extension, the council defeated a Russian and Chinese attempt to write into the resolution language that would have identified the sanctions as the sole cause of continuing hardships in Iraq. That argument did not convince all council members, as the Iraqis are thought to have generated $8.4 billion in oil sales in the latest six-month phase. Since 1996, $25.3 billion in oil has been sold. Some experts say that President Saddam Hussein is also pulling in hundreds of millions of dollars in illegally smuggled oil. Not all the legal profits go to the government for purchases to improve the lives of Iraqi citizens. A third of the income is set aside for a compensation fund for victims of Iraq's invasion of Kuwait, and other sums are earmarked for autonomous Kurdish areas of Iraq and for the arms inspection budget. Even so, Secretary General Kofi Annan said in his latest report to the Security Council this week, there is now enough money to significantly mitigate civilians' hardships if the government managed it better. "Now that increased revenues are available for the implementation of the program, the government of Iraq is in a position to reduce current malnutrition levels and to improve the health status of the Iraqi people," Mr. Annan said. He urged Iraq to increase the oil revenue allocated to health and nutrition, to order and distribute supplies more efficiently. Mr. Annan also said in his report that the most recent surveys by Unicef, the United Nations children's fund, found that malnutrition rates had leveled, with a slight reduction in the number of underweight children, although rates for severe conditions known as stunting and wasting were still too high. As for other aspects of children's welfare, Mr. Annan's report noted some advances in education, including the rehabilitation of schools. But Mr. Annan again warned that the practice of certain Security Council members -- primarily the United States, though it was not named -- of blocking contracts with Iraq for water and sanitation equipment will continue to harm health. The Security Council also decided in the resolution approved Thursday night to send an independent assessment team to Iraq to study the condition of the Iraqi people. . . . . . In an interview Thursday, Hans Blix, the executive chairman of the United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission, or Unmovic, said that the new organization has now filled most senior-level jobs and will be training inspectors over the next few months. By August, they will be ready to reopen the Baghdad monitoring center, closed by Iraq since December 1998, and prepare for resumed inspections. The International Atomic Energy Agency, which Dr. Blix once directed and which is responsible for monitoring nuclear programs, is ready to resume its inspections at any time. Although most of Iraq's complaints about the earlier inspection commission, Unscom, have been addressed in the new system, Mr. Hussein has shown no inclination to let inspectors return. Dr. Blix said that after an absence of 18 months, inspectors will have to re-establish baselines for surveys, reviewing all suspect Iraqi sites to be monitored. Confounding his critics, Dr. Blix, a former Swedish foreign minister, has kept some essential experts from Unscom on his team, ignoring Iraqi and Russian demands for a clean slate. "Then comes the question, when are we going in?" he said. "We see no sign whatever of that at the present time. However, in politics things can change, and my personal view is that the Iraqis would gain by cooperating and accepting." "They demand that the so-called sanctions should be lifted," he said. But he added that few stringent sanctions remained, beyond a ban on air travel in and out of the country. "It was an embargo on the sale of oil first; now there are no limits on how much oil they can sell," he said. "They can use any amount they want to buy food and medicine -- but they cannot buy weapons. "This is the Iraqi position: that they want to have all these restrictions lifted. He said the Security Council resolution creating the new inspection commission offered some innovations that Iraq should consider if it wants to speed the end of sanctions. "It enables the Security Council to suspend the sanctions provided two criteria: that there be cooperation with Unmovic in 120 days, and included in the cooperation will also be the resolution of some key disarmament issues," he said. "The criteria are, I would say, more lenient." ________________________________________________________ · Squabbling Over Iraqi Sanctions, Economist, 10 June '00 ALMOST ten years since the United Nations first imposed sanctions on Iraq, and over three and a half years since it introduced a "temporary" humanitarian programme to mitigate their effects on ordinary Iraqis, the Security Council looks as divided as ever over the future of Iraq. In preparation for a vote on June 8th on the renewal of the oil-for food scheme, as the humanitarian programme is known, the council's hawks and doves floated irreconcilable proposals and counter-proposals. The net result seems likely simply to prolong the status quo. Britain, one of the more unforgiving council members, wanted to double the period between renewals of the programme, to a year at a time. Others balked at this, seeing it as an attempt to postpone into the far future any major amendments to the sanctions regime. France, a relative dove, proposed easing the near-total ban on air travel to and from Iraq. But that suggestion is anathema to America and Britain. The only reform that stands much chance of adoption would merely streamline the arduous process of winning the council's approval for humanitarian imports. As recently as the beginning of May, that process appeared hopelessly gummed up. America and Britain had put almost $2 billion-worth of contracts on indefinite hold for fear, they argued, that the goods in question would be used for military rather than humanitarian purposes. But after endless prodding from UN officials, the value of contracts in limbo has fallen to $1.6 billion over the past five weeks. Thanks to this push, plus high oil prices and Iraq's increasing volume of exports, the value of goods now bound eventually for Iraq is $3.5 billion-which is about half the total of goods that Iraq has received since the scheme began. There is still room for improvement. A UN official pointedly reminded the council on June 6th that $321m-worth of contracts remain on hold without any explanation. Iraq, too, could help itself, especially by ordering more nutritional supplements. But as Kofi Annan, the UN secretary-general, stated in his most recent report, the oil-for-food programme was never intended as "a substitute for the resumption of normal economic activity and cannot be expected to address the whole range of needs of the Iraqi population." Indeed, the main reason for the relative prosperity of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region is that it has an economic life beyond oil-for-food (see article). For the rest of Iraq, however, a return to normality remains linked to the vexed question of disarmament. The UN continues to go through the motions of assembling a new arms-control body to hunt for banned weapons. But Iraq has refused to countenance any inspection missions since December 1998, when its attempts to block inspectors from certain sites led to a bout of American and British bombing. Bombing on a lesser scale continues, almost routinely. So far this year, according to American figures, the American and British jets patrolling over Iraq have been fired at 149 times by Iraqi air defences, and have bombed 51 times "in retaliation". Like the deprivations of sanctions, intermittent bombing has become part of the fabric of Iraqi life. ________________________________________________________ · Iraq Says UN Mismanaging Oil-for-Food Program, AP, 10 June '00 http://www.thestar.com/thestar/editorial/updates/intlnews/200006110_IRAQ-UN. html BAGHDAD -- Iraq accused the United Nations on Saturday of mismanaging billions of dollars in revenues from the oil-for-food program, saying the money could have been well-spent combatting the country's drought. Iraq's deputy agriculture minister, Basil al-Dalali, spoke of the government's frustration at not being able to use the money when ''Iraq needs badly many things related to its economy.'' The oil-for-food program allows Iraq to circumvent UN economic sanctions and sell oil under supervision. However, the revenues must be deposited in an escrow account in a French bank and can only be spent buying food and humanitarian goods on contracts approved by the UN sanctions committee. Al-Dalali said Saturday that Iraq has more than $7 billion (U.S.) in the French account but ''the money is frozen.'' Though he didn't say why, he was apparently referring to the committee's having either rejected contracts or put them on hold. Iraq often has accused the United States and Britain - who dominate the sanctions committee - of creating hurdles for contracts. The two countries have said they were only trying to ensure the goods could not be used for military purposes. ''Contracts are still on hold while our suffering is on the increase,'' al-Dalali said. Iraqi officials and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization have said Iraq lost 70 per cent of its crops in the country's breadbasket last year due to a drought. No forecasts are available for this year's drought but al-Dalali predicted it would be the worst in a century. UN relief officials said the drought would have a devastating impact on the country's animals, crops and power-generating capacity. The Food and Agriculture Organization said it is preparing ''for another serious crisis,'' and urged the UN committee to approve Iraq's spending $154 million US on irrigation equipment. Iraq's Al-Khalis and Diyala rivers, which water some of Iraq's most fertile land and orchards, have almost dried up. The government is considering digging a canal to feed them from the Tigris River, though that too has hit dangerously low levels in the last two years. . . . . . ________________________________________________________ · Iraq Expects Poor 2000 Harvest Due to Drought, Reuters, 10 June '00 http://www.cnn.com/2000/WORLD/meast/06/10/bc.iraq.agriculture.reut/index.htm l BAGHDAD -- Iraq expects a poor harvest this year due to acute drought and a lack of fertilizers and equipment, a senior government official said on Saturday. "Lack of fertilizers, agricultural machinery and the means of spraying planted areas, let alone drought, will badly affect this year's harvest," agriculture ministry undersecretary Basil Dalali told a news conference. "Iraq is facing a severe drought for the second season exacerbated by the embargo, which has very seriously affected the agriculture sector," he said. Iraq has been isolated by U.N. sanctions since its 1990 invasion of Kuwait. "Much of the equipment, materials and spare parts bought by Iraq to cope with severe drought have been put on hold by the U.N. sanctions committee." The equipment includes over 3,700 water-spraying machines that Iraq sought to obtain under phase six of the oil-for-food deal with the United Nations that ended in December 1999. The U.N. sanctions committee recently released $143 million worth of agricultural equipment. . . . . . Dalali said the drought had been a further blow to Iraqi livestock already hit by foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). "Around one million head of livestock hit by foot-and-mouth disease have died because of the lack of vaccines," he added. . . . . . Before 1990, Iraq imported 70 percent of its food needs. Under sanctions, it has launched a drive for self-sufficiency, rehabilitating rural infrastructure, cultivating more land, digging canals and increasing farm prices. ________________________________________________________ Only links provided for the following reports: · Iraq Urges Arab League to Stop Turkish Assault, Reuters, 5 June '00 http://www.cnn.com/2000/WORLD/meast/06/05/iraq.turkey.reut/index.html · Smuggled Iraqi Oil Flows Once More, Stratfor, 7 June '00 http://www.stratfor.com/MEAF/commentary/0006070210.htm · Iraq 'Steps Up Attacks on UK Pilots', BBC, 8 June '00 http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/uk_politics/newsid_782000/782917.stm · Italy Urges Iraq to Comply with U.N. Arms Control, Reuters, 8 June '00 http://abcnews.go.com/wire/World/reuters20000608_2183.html -- ----------------------------------------------------------------------- This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq For removal from list, email email@example.com Full details of CASI's various lists can be found on the CASI website: http://welcome.to/casi