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Straw on 'smart' sanctions

Nothing new here but it does show that 'smart' sanctions are still on the


CAIRO, Nov 15 (AFP) - The United States and Britain are
studying with Russia and other nations a revised plan for "smart
sanctions" on Iraq, British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said in
an Arabic newspaper interview published Thursday.

The revised plan will permit Iraq to import all products not
related to defense and will prevent it from importing products
used to develop weapons of mass destruction, Straw said in the
interview with Al-Hayat daily.

Baghdad has steadfastly opposed any revised regime of
economic sanctions slapped on the country 11 years ago after
its invasion of Kuwait.

Straw gave no details but was quoted as saying the plan was
modified and improved, coming closer to positions expressed
by Iraq's neighbors Jordan, Syria and Turkey.

These three countries had expressed reservations about the
smart sanctions regime.

Straw said the revised plan would satisfy the interests of all,
including Russia's, though the talks with Moscow had not ended
and he could not say whether a new proposal would be
submitted to the UN Security Council before the end of the
month, when the current phase of the oil-for-food program

The UN Security Council in July put off indefinitely a vote on a
revised sanctions regime after Russia threatened to use its veto
and opposition from Iraq's neighbors.

The reforms would scrap the embargo on civilian trade with
Baghdad while tightening controls to prevent oil smuggling out
of Iraq and illegal arms imports into the country.

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