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I found some very interesting articles.
a) it seems that Iraq is getting out of its (economic and political) isolation more and more. That is good news for the children of Iraq.
b) there are discussions, also on this list, about facts & figures of contracts on hold by the Sanctions committee. And there are several sources that give us contradictory information. The second article is an accusation of the Iraqi minister of Transport and Communications. This kind of articles appear often in the Iraqi press. I don't see why they shouldn't be trusted. Or am I wrong? This subject makes a good topic for a more profound discussion.
c) the pope calls (again) on all people in the world to lift the embargo on Iraq.
d) Global Conference demands immediate lifting of Iraq sanctions.
Iraq ratifies new free trade zone deals with Arab countries
Baghdad, Dec. 11, INA
Iraq's Revolution Command Council has approved deals of Free Trade Zone signed between Iraq and each of Yemen, Algeria and the United Arab Emirates; the same of which was signed with Egypt, Syria and Tunisia earlier this year.
An Iraqi official has said that the said deals aim at achieving economic integration and social prosperity in addition to support economic Arab unity.
He said that Iraq has hailed the free trade zones with the six Arab countries, stressing that they would provide positive atmosphere among those countries in economic and political fields.
Moreover, they could decrease foreign economic pressure and paralyse means of US-Zionist aggression on the Arab nation.
Iraq considers those agreements as a significant step to break the UN 11-year long embargo imposed on it. It expressed keenness on signing same deals with other Arab countries, saying they may establish a united Arab free trade zone that can form Arab economic integration.
US, Britain representatives put new contracts on hold
Baghdad, Dec.11, INA
The US and its ally Britain through their representatives at 661 Sanctions Committee have put on hold importation of commodities and machines under flimsy pretexts.
In a statement to INA, Iraq’s Minister of Transport and Communications Dr. Ahmed Murtadha Ahmed said that the Ministry is one of Iraqi ministries that exposed to the harm of 661 Sanctions Committee through the non approval of its contracts despite the fact that the whole formations of the Ministry are made for serving people but great number of contracts have been hindering for illogical reasons.
Dr. Ahmed made it clear that the hindered contracts include equipment for ports, railways, civil Aviation, land transport, water transport, communications and Meteorology.
Dr. Ahmed said that the contracts reached to 252 that worth $821 million in which 97 contracts for General Dept. of Posts and Communication and Iraqi ports Dept., 35 contracts for Public Transport Dept., 27 contracts for Iraqi Railways Dept., 27 contracts for Land Transport, 17 contracts for Meteorological Dept., 12 contracts for General Dept. of constructing projects of Transport and Communications, 15 contracts for Civil Aviation Dept. 9 contracts for water Transport Dept. , 13 contracts for Iraqi Airlines, al- Dhilal Company.
Dr. concluded as saying that the whole contracts is for humanitarian services whether it includes telephones, vehicles for transport, constructing materials, spare parts, diggers, and boars for ports services.
Pope calls for lifting embargo
Vatican, Dec. 12, INA
In a meeting with Iraqi bishops in Vatican Tuesday, Pope John Paul II called on all people in the world to lift the embargo on Iraq.
He expressed sympathy with the people of Iraq and pray for working to achieve peace and stop all attacks on peoples.
He declared that the next Friday would be a day of fasting for peace and to be an occasion for being close to those who suffer.
Global Conference demands immediate lifting of Iraq sanctions
Madrid, Dec. 10, Moheet
The political organisations and parties participating in Sao Paulo Conference, held in Havana, demanded an immediate lifting of the 11-year long sanctions imposed on Iraq because it constitutes a form of genocide which runs contrary to the international community norms and rules.
The Conference said the September 11 attacks have created full confidence to find a just, balanced policy for combating the terrorism away from President W. Bush's terrorist concepts.
It is note worthy that more than 88 anti-US Globalization political parties from all the continents have took part in the Conference.