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[casi] Kuwait MPs angry over Bremer calls!!

Kuwait MPs angry over Bremer calls

Sunday 28 September 2003, 18:18 Makka Time,15:18 GMT

Kuwait parliamentarians are furious at a US suggestion
that the oil-rich emirate drop demands for billions of
dollars in war reparations owed by former foe Iraq.

US occupying administrator Paul Bremer said on Friday
that out of Iraq’s total debt of $200 billion, Baghdad
owed $98 billion in reparations to Kuwait and Saudi
Arabia for losses during Iraq’s occupation of the
emirate from 1990 to 1991.

“This is some kind of (US) pressure on Kuwait…The
issue of the reparations is something that concerns
the impacted countries and the United Nations,” said
MP Yusif al-Zalzalah in remarks carried by a Kuwaiti
newspaper on Sunday.

Al-Zalzalah said the demand was “unacceptable”.

Bremer said “it is curious to me to have a country
whose (annual) per capita income GDP is about $800…pay
reparations to a country whose per-capita GDP is a
factor of 10 times that” for a war which all Iraqis
now in power opposed.

US-led forces ousted Iraqi troops from Kuwait in 1991.
Iraq also launched missiles into Saudi territory.

Baghdad subsequently agreed to pay compensation for
the damage it caused. Some revenue from Iraq’s UN
oil-for-food programme went towards payment of

US debt demands

“If Bremer is so concerned about per capita income he
has to demand dropping all of the United States of
America's debts on poor nations where per capita
incomes don’t exceed $30 a year,” MP Daif Allah
Buramiya told the daily Arab Times.

Despite some warming of relations between Kuwait and
Iraq since US troops ousted former Iraqi President
Saddam Hussein in April, bilateral ties remain

“The Iraqi occupation happened, so the past political
leadership or the one that follows it must bear
responsibility for that occupation,” said MP Khalid

Another deputy, Walid al-Tabtabai, said Kuwait had
taken a risk by opening its airspace and land to be
the springboard for US-led forces to launch the war
against Iraq in March.


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