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]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

News for 24 July - 30 July 2000 (fwd)

News for 24 July '00 to 30 July 2000

[ed. note: unlike usual practice, I list the articles below in reverse
chronological order.  I occasionally include links to other versions of the
stories; in no cases is much information added, as I recall.  Many thanks 
for Hathal Al-Qassab for doing such an excellent job these past months!]

30/7/00:Two Iraqis Killed in Grenade Attack (AP)
29/7/00:Ex-Un Inspector Back In Iraq  (BBC)
29/7/00:Iraq Opposes Iran-Kuwait Border Talks (BBC)
28/7/00:Iraq Rejects Kuwait's Offer Of Conditional Talks (Reuters)
28/7/00:Egypt's Moussa Calls For Review Of Iraq Policy (Reuters)
28/7/00:Kuwait Struggles To Overcome Pain Of Iraqi Invasion (AP)
28/7/00:Russia To Carry On Talking With Iraq (Reuters)
27/7/00:Saddam Cancer Fear Spurs Rivals (London Times)
27/7/00:Iraqi Kurdish Chief Warns Of Civil War (Reuters)
27/7/00:Iraq Opens Its First Internet Cafe, But Access Is Restricted
26/7/00:Iraq Accuses U.S. Of Blocking Oil Spare Parts Plan (Reuters)
26/7/00:Iraq Says Turkey Masses Troops Near Border (Reuters)
26/7/00:Secretary-General Approves Distribution Plan For Phase Viii
    (UN OIP)
25/07/00:Iraq Sanctions Far From Over (Agence France Presse)
25/7/00:Iraq Sanctions Condemned (BBC)
25/7/00:Call To Indict Iraqi 'War Criminals' (BBC)
25/7/00:Kuwait Offers Conditional Talks To Iraq (Reuters)
24/7/00:Iraq Repeats Amnesty Offer To Illegal Emigrants (Reuters)

----- ----- ----- -----

The Associated Press

BAGHDAD, Iraq (AP) A hand grenade attack has killed two people at a
celebration in southern Iraq attended by a senior ruling party official, the
state-run Iraqi News Agency reported Sunday.

Several people were injured in the Saturday morning attack in Dawaya,
220 miles south of Baghdad, which the news agency blamed on Iranian

Abdelbaqi Abdelkareem al-Sadoun, a member of the Baath party's
powerful regional command, was not among the casualties, according to
the agency. Al-Sadoun also is the party official in charge of the southern

"A criminal from the Iranian regime's agents threw a hand grenade at a
gathering of people celebrating the 32nd anniversary of the July 17
revolution," the agency said. "Two innocent people were killed and
many others were injured."

Iraq and Iran both allow opponents of the other's government to work
from their soil. A 1980-88 war between the two countries claimed more
than a million lives; the U.N.-brokered cease-fire ended the bloodshed
but not the hostility.

There was no immediate comment from Iran on Sunday's allegations.

Some of the injured were treated at the scene and others were taken to
area hospitals, the news agency said without providing the number of

----- ----- ----- -----

BBC News

A former United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq, Scott Ritter, has
returned to Baghdad to make a documentary film about the suspected
weapons sites he once inspected.

Mr Ritter, who was accused by Baghdad of spying for the United States,
has said President Saddam Hussein had invited him to judge whether
Iraq had rebuilt its arsenal since the UN inspections broke off in late

White House spokesman PJ Crowley said Mr Ritter's trip would provide
a propaganda victory for Baghdad, and that his documentary was no
substitute for allowing real UN inspectors to do their job.

Iraq has been under a UN embargo since 1991. Under the terms of UN
Security Council resolutions, the embargo cannot be lifted until the UN
has certified that Iraq has destroyed all its weapons of mass destruction,
and a monitoring regime is put in place to ensure that Iraq does not
resume building such weapons.

Iraqi invitation

Mr Ritter, a former US Marine who was once vilified by Baghdad, visited
suspected weapons manufacturing sights on Saturday at the invitation
of the Iraqi Government.

The former UN weapons inspector, who backed a US-British bombing
campaign against Iraq in December 1998 for not co-operating with the
UN, has now concluded that Iraq has in fact disarmed and no longer
poses a threat to anyone.

It was Mr Ritter's style of intrusive, surprise inspections of suspected
weapons sites and government facilities that provoked the breakdown of
Iraq's co-operation with the weapons inspectors.

"I think what we plan to do with this documentary film will go a long way
toward de-demonising Iraq in the eyes of the American people and in the
eyes of the European people," Mr Ritter said.

'Irresponsible speculation'

"There has been a lot of what I call irresponsible speculation about what
Iraq is doing today now that weapons inspectors are not in Iraq," Mr
Ritter said.

He also said that in his opinion, any new UN inspection regime was
"doomed to fail".

According to Mr Ritter, he and his camera crew are going to be allowed
access to weapons facilities throughout Iraq.

Mr Ritter is also hoping to secure an interview with Saddam Hussein.

New resolution

The UN evacuated its weapons inspectors from Iraq in December 1998
on the eve of a US-British air attacks. Iraq has not allowed weapons
inspectors to return since.

A UN resolution passed at the end of last year offered the temporary,
and renewable, suspension of sanctions in exchange of full Iraqi co-
operation with a new UN arms control programme.

[See also,,
posted to s-c-d on 28/7/00,,]

----- ----- ----- -----

BBC World Service newsroom

Iraq has said it will not accept any deal Iran and Kuwait reach on their
disputed maritime border if it fails to take Baghdad's legitimate interests
into account.

The statement by a foreign ministry spokesman follows the decision by
Iran and Kuwait to resume talks in September on agreeing their border in
an area of the northern Gulf rich in gas and oil.

Baghdad has also said it will not recognise the maritime border deal
Kuwait reached with Saudi Arabia earlier this month. The border
disputes resurfaced earlier this year when Iran started drilling in Dorra
offshore field which is also claimed by Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.

[See also]

----- ----- ----- -----


BAGHDAD, July 28 (Reuters) - Iraq  dismissed as a public relations ploy
an  offer by Kuwait for conditional talks with  its former occupier and
denied it held any  Kuwaiti detainees whose release Kuwait  set as a pre-
condition for dialogue.  Kuwaiti Defence Minister Sheikh Salem  Sabah al-
Salem al- Sabah said on  Tuesday he was ready for talks with  Iraq, under
international auspices, in return for the release  of Kuwaitis and others
Kuwait says are still held by Iraq.  "The pre-conditions that were
announced by Salem  al-Sabah is a failed attempt to cheat Kuwaiti public
opinion and families of the missing," an Iraqi Foreign  Ministry"s
spokesman said in a statement carried by the  Iraqi News Agency. But
the spokesman added Baghdad  was ready to "work directly with the
Kuwaitis and Saudis  under the auspices of the International Committee
of the  Red Cross" to investigate the fate of the missing but  without pre-
conditions. Kuwait says that about 605  people -- including 550 Kuwaitis -
- have been reported  missing since the 1990 Iraqi occupation of the
emirate.  Iraq has repeatedly denied that it had any Kuwaiti  detainees on
its territory, but says it would do its best to  investigate their fate. The
Iraqi spokesman said that Iraq  was ready to meet with families of the
missing Kuwaitis in  the presence of ICRC officials "without any  pre-
conditions in order to brief them on the reality and  explain to them how
we are investigating the fate of their  missing relatives." Baghdad also
maintains that Kuwait has  withheld information on the fate of 1,150
missing Iraqis.  Iraq has been boycotting a humanitarian committee
trying  to determine the fate of the missing Kuwaitis, objecting to  the
participation of the United States, Britain and France,  leading members
of the coalition which drove it out of  Kuwait in 1991. "Iraq rejects the
presence of  representatives of countries which launched aggression
against Iraq such as the United States and Britain in  meetings of the
committee," the spokesman said.

----- ----- ----- -----


CAIRO, July 28 (Reuters) - Egyptian  Foreign Minister Amr Moussa said
on  Friday that Arab and other countries  should review their policies
towards Iraq,  which is still crippled by 10-year-old  United Nations
sanctions. "My hope is  that everyone will review (their position),  now
that 10 years have passed and  international law should be applied in a
way that realises the interests of the Iraq and the Arab  world," Moussa
told reporters in Cairo. Russian President  Vladimir Putin promised in a
meeting with Iraqi Deputy  Prime Minister Tareq Aziz in Moscow on
Wednesday to  press for an end to the sanctions. U.N. Security Council
member Russia says the sanctions imposed after Iraq  invaded
neighbouring Kuwait in 1990 have proved  ineffective and harm civilians.
"The problem of Iraq is not  just Arab, but international and is linked to
Security  Council Resolutions. It (Security Council) must move  towards
lifting the suffering from the people of Iraq and  develop its handling of
this issue," Moussa said. "We can"t  imagine that 10 years of monitoring
and inspection has  come to nothing." The United States, which led the
international force that pushed Iraq out of Kuwait in the  1991 Gulf War,
backs the sanctions and has chastised  Russia"s Putin for meeting a
senior Iraqui official. Kuwaiti  and Saudi opposition to reintegrating Iraq,
which has the  world"s second largest proven oil reserves, has so far
stymied Egyptian efforts to hold an Arab summit this year.  Iraq
reopened its embassy in the United Arab Emirates  earlier this month,
after the UAE reopened its embassy in  Baghdad in April, becoming the
fourth Gulf Arab state to  reactivate diplomatic relations with Iraq.

----- ----- ----- -----

Associated Press, DIANA ELIAS

KUWAIT -- Kuwaiti researcher Sami al-Faraj still cannot listen to Iraqi
songs and has nightmares  about atrocities he says he saw during Iraq's
invasion of his country a decade ago.

 But he says Kuwaitis cannot afford to keep looking back to the day they
woke to find Iraqi tanks in  their streets. Al-Faraj, head of the
independent Kuwait Center for Strategic Studies, says they must  look
ahead to living and working with the big neighbor that invaded Aug. 2,

 "On the personal level, it is a very bitter subject," al-Faraj says. "But at
the same time, we have to  save future generations from going through a
similar ordeal."

 Kuwait's desert border with Iraq has been closed since U.S.-led troops
defeated the Iraqi army in the  1991 Gulf War and ended Iraqi President
Saddam Hussein's seven-month occupation. According to  official
figures, Iraqi forces killed 330 Kuwaitis during the occupation and war.

 The Kuwaiti government and most Kuwaitis want Saddam's regime to
comply with all U.N. Security  Council resolutions before Kuwait
considers any resumption of ties.

 The resolutions demand Iraq dismantle its weapons of mass destruction,
pay reparations, return  looted property and -- most important for
Kuwaitis -- account for more than 600 people Kuwait  contends are jailed
in Iraq. Iraq denies holding any prisoners and accuses Kuwait of failing
to disclose  information about 1,150 Iraqis who disappeared during the

 "We don't hate Iraqis, but first we want to see the joy of a mother
welcoming her returning son," says  Mohammad al-Jabri, a police officer
who was 18 when Iraqi troops invaded -- a day Kuwaitis call  "Black

 Al-Jabri says he couldn't believe his eyes when he saw Iraqi tanks near
his home. "How could an  Arab country we helped for eight years turn
its guns on us?" he asks.

 Kuwait provided Iraq financial backing during the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.
But before invading, Iraq  had been making increasingly insistent calls
that its war debts to Kuwait be forgiven, as well as  accusing Kuwait of
stealing Iraqi oil and depressing world prices for oil -- on which both
countries'  economies depended.

 Al-Faraj looks to economics as a way to improve regional relations and
strengthen Kuwait's security.

 He wants Kuwait to transform itself from an economy based almost
solely on oil into a commercial,  services and transportation hub for Iraq,
Iran and the other Persian Gulf states. Iraq would have to  comply with
the U.N. resolutions before being welcomed into the planned economic

 Al-Faraj's economic plan has been endorsed by Sheik Nasser Sabah Al
Ahmed Al Sabah, a senior  member of Kuwait's ruling family, which
makes it likely it will become official policy.

 Sheik Nasser, chief adviser to Crown Prince Sheik Saad Al Abdullah Al
Sabah, says Iraqis could  benefit from the advanced banking sector, the
ports and business expertise in this country of 2.3  million people, most
of whom are guest workers.

 But first, Saddam must go as Iraq's leader, he insists.

 "We hope to God the obstacles will be removed as soon as possible,
and the Iraqi people will be  freed as we were freed," Sheik Nasser said at
a May seminar organized by Parliament on the future of  Kuwaiti-Iraqi

 Four of Kuwait's partners in the Gulf Cooperation Council -- the United
Arab Emirates, Qatar, Oman  and Bahrain -- have reopened embassies in

 Abdullah al-Shayeji, a political scientist at Kuwait University, says
those Arab countries contend the  main threat to their security lies in
Persian Iran rather than Arab Iraq.

 Al-Faraj says Kuwaitis will never forget the Iraqi attack, but are a
practical people and will in the end  be able to "bypass it."

----- ----- ----- -----


MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russia Friday brushed aside U.S. criticism of
meetings in Moscow with Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tareq Aziz and
said it would keep supporting an end to sanctions and air raids against

Russia, which still hopes to recoup some of Baghdad's Soviet-era debts
and sees it as a big export market, has consistently backed Iraqi demands
for the lifting of U.N. sanctions and an end to restrictions on oil exports.

``Russia is a sovereign and independent state and we will decide for
ourselves with whom and to what extent we build our relations. We and
Iraq have pursued and continue to pursue our dialogue,'' Foreign
Minister Igor Ivanov told a news conference.

He said such a dialogue answered the interests of both countries and of
settling problems in the Gulf region. The United States chided Russian
President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday for meeting Aziz.

Putin promised Aziz to press for an end to U.N. sanctions on Iraq but
also urged Baghdad to cooperate with the United Nations on weapons
destruction programs.

Putin said Iraq would help Russia put its case if it allowed U.N. experts to
resume checks on sites where the West fears it might be developing
weapons of mass destruction. Russia is a permanent member of the U.N
Security Council.

Ivanov reiterated these promises.

``We insist that an end be put to the constant bombings of Iraq by U.S.
and British planes and on an end to interference in the internal affairs of
Iraq,'' Ivanov said.

Ivanov said experience had shown that only diplomacy could bring
stability in the Gulf while Aziz added that Russia could help bring about
such a goal.

``We hope that Russia, as a great and peace-loving power and respectful
of international laws, will be able to make efforts to normalize relations in
the region,'' Aziz said.

Russia says sanctions imposed on Baghdad after it invaded neighboring
Kuwait in 1990 have proved ineffective and harm civilians.

In a further sign that many countries want a rethink after 10 years of
sanctions, Egyptian Foreign Minister AMr. Moussa on Friday called for
Arab and other countries to review their policies toward Iraq. So far four
Arab countries have resumed diplomatic links with Baghdad.

The United States, which led an international force that drove Iraqi
troops from Kuwait in 1991, still backs the sanctions.

[See also

----- ----- ----- -----

London Times, Michael Theodoulou and Giles Whittell

PRESIDENT Saddam Hussein of Iraq, the world's most resilient leader, is
seriously ill and thought to have cancer, according to reports from

Word of his deteriorating health will intensify a power struggle between
his two sons and undermine the myth of invincibility that he has
carefully fostered during two decades of autocratic rule.

"We know Saddam is unwell and understand it may be cancer, but we
don't know how bad it is or how long he can go on for," an Iraqi
businessman in Jordan said. Other well-connected Iraqi travellers, who
are not connected to opposition groups, have made similar claims in
recent days.

Ordinary Iraqis, too, have been speculating about Saddam's health since
he made a far shorter than usual address to his countrymen last week to
mark the 32nd anniversary of the coup that brought his Baath Party to
power. He did not refer directly to his long stand-off with the West and
spoke in almost mystical terms, comparing the Baath revolution to "the
smile of a baby, the prayer of a hermit and rain falling on parched land".

Dressed in a dark suit and tie for the televised speech, the 63-year-old
Iraqi leader appeared haggard but there were no other signs of illness.
His hair, as usual, was dyed a virile jet black.

Rumours that Saddam has cancer have circulated before but have proved
impossible to confirm, given the secrecy of his regime. The Iraqi leader
has always prided himself on a healthy lifestyle. He once ordered Cabinet
ministers to lose weight and took a well-publicised dip in the Tigris River
to demonstrate his political buoyancy during a period of tension with the

The unconfirmed reports of his deteriorating health came as President
Putin welcomed Tariq Aziz, Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister, to the Kremlin
yesterday to discuss the lifting UN sanctions.

Proceeds from oil smuggling in the past ten years have ensured that the
regime remains immune from the suffering caused by sanctions. There is
little organised opposition within the country and Saddam's Western-
backed exiled opponents remain weak. Assassination attempts, coup
plots and an uprising in the wake of the 1991 Gulf War failed to unseat

Any succession in the Iraqi regime is unlikely to be as smooth as that in
neighbouring Syria after the death in June of President Hafez al-Assad.
The reins of power in Damascus were passed uncontested to his son,
Bashar, a British-trained eye doctor.

The rivalry between Saddam's sons is compounded by his reluctance to
make clear which one will succeed him. Uday, 36, is portrayed by
defectors as a torturer, serial rapist and killer. The less mercurial Qusay,
34, controls the intelligence and security apparatus.

----- ----- ----- -----


Ankara (Reuters) - An Iraqi Kurdish leader said yesterday an attack by
President Saddam Hussein's troops on the Kurdish-held north would
lead to civil war in the Kurdish region. Jalal Talabani said up to 50,000
Iraqi government soldiers were stationed on the edge of the
mountainous Kurdish enclave which broke away from Baghdad's rule
after the 1991 Gulf War, poised with a prepared plan of attack.

"In our area facing us are three Iraqi army corps," Talabani told Reuters
in an interview during a visit to Turkey. "Altogether there are about 15
divisions facing us, besides some forces from the Republican Guards."

With the help of joint U.S.-British air patrols enforcing a no-fly zone over
most of the breakaway region, Talabani said his lightly armed Patriotic
Union of Kurdistan (PUK) "peshemerga" fighters were determined to
face any threat.

"They know that we will resist and this will lead to a new civil war in Iraqi
Kurdistan," he said.  "Perhaps they will succeed in occupying this or
that town, but the area will turn to a field for partisan war."

Iraq's restive Kurds rose up against Baghdad during the Gulf War, but an
offensive by government troops forced hundreds of thousands of Kurds
to flee through the mountains. Kurdish peshmergas backed by allied air
power later succeeded in wresting the area from Baghdad's grip.

Intermittent fighting which then broke out between the PUK and the rival
Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) of Massoud Barzani culminated in
1996 when the KDP, backed by Baghdad's forces overran Talabani's
capital, Sulaymaniyah.

A U.S.-brokered ceasefire followed in 1997. Western diplomats said they
had warned the feuding Kurds they would not come to their aid if they
persisted in their internecine war. "Now we have no war, we have peace
in Kurdistan. This will not give any pretext for the (Iraqi) regime to attack
us," said Talabani during his visit to Turkey, which hosts the U.S.-British
Operation Northern Watch air patrols.

He said Shi'ite rebels in the south of Iraq would also seize the
opportunity of unrest in the Kurdish areas to step up their struggle
against the Iraqi government. "Also I think the morale of the Iraqi army is
not so high as to use it in a such a risky adventure," he said.

Talabani criticised Washington. "I don't think the Americans have a plan
to remove Saddam," he said. "There is no plan. The Americans want to
see Saddam Hussein ousted, but they have no plan to implement it, so
how can they ask the Kurds to participate in it?"

Instead, the greying Talabani, who has championed Kurdish nationalism
since the 1960s, said the Iraqi government would collapse from within.
"We don't think the Iraqi regime is ready for any kind of democratic
change," he said.

"They are still continuing their dictatorship, they are still continuing their
ethnic cleansing policies towards the Kurds and Turcomans." "I think
there a lot of problems facing the regime and a lot of contradictions, and
because the regime cannot solve these problems and contradictions, the
regime will collapse."

----- ----- ----- -----

NASTY, AND THEY DON'T WORK, Tony Karon [posted to s-c-d 27/7/00]

----- ----- ----- -----

Associated Press, Leon Barko

BAGHDAD, Iraq, July 27 — The Iraqi  government opened the country’s
first Internet  cafe today in an attempt to provide its isolated  people with
a glimpse of what is happening in  the outside world.  Patrons of the
Internet cafe in Baghdad will be  allowed to browse Web sites that have
been  government-screened to ensure they do not violate “the  precepts
of Islamic religion” or offend “morals and ethics,”  Iraq’s transport and
communications minister, Ahhmed  Murtada Ahmed Khalil, said.  But no
matter how restricted, the cafe is a bold step in  a country where satellite
dishes and modems are banned  and special permission is needed even
to install a fax.  Iraq’s media is controlled by a combination of  self-
censorship and a tight state grip on the flow of  information. Radio and
television stations are state-run  and newspapers are sponsored by the
ruling party — and  all conform to government policy.

 Limited Access

The sole provider of Internet services in Iraq is the  Ministry of Culture
and Information; access until now had  been restricted to government
use.  Khalil said similar cafes will be opened elsewhere in  Baghdad and
other major Iraqi cities, and he vowed to  enact measures to help Iraq
catch up in Internet  technology.   President Saddam Hussein has
ordered a university be  set up to deal exclusively with computer
technology so  Iraqis can keep abreast of advances.  Private
entrepreneurs are not allowed to set up  Internet cafes and citizens with
home computers still  cannot have a direct link. But using terminals at the
cafe,  Iraqis can now set up their own private e-mail addresses.  “Of
course, we cannot sell and buy stocks through the  cafe and we know
that the whole operation is closely  monitored, but it is a step in the right
direction,” said Leith,  a browser who declined to give his full name.  The
bright, air-conditioned cafe charges $1 for each  hour of computer use, a
substantial sum in Iraq, where the  monthly salary of a schoolteacher is
about $3.  “It is our first outpost of information technology. I hope  the
authorities will not stop here,” said Husam Kareem,  who runs a
computer shop in Baghdad.

 Blame It on the Sanctions

Government officials blame U.N. sanctions imposed after  Iraq’s 1990
invasion of Kuwait, which led to the Persian  Gulf War, for the delay in
setting up Internet access and a  cellular phone network in the country.
Despite the sanctions, computer companies and  related stores are
sprouting up in Baghdad. Shops selling  or renting compact discs have
become so numerous  authorities have begun requiring owners to
register with  the Information Ministry.  Computers and laptops with the
latest Pentium  processors are available, mostly via the United Arab
Emirates. Iraq’s new class of computer entrepreneurs  attributes its
existence to the scrapping of customs duties  on computer imports and
lowered taxes on computer  businesses.  Individuals, however, do not
yet have the freedom to  set up their own networking companies.

----- ----- ----- -----


NEW YORK, July 26 (Reuters) -  Iraq"s U.N. ambassador accused the
United States and Britain of  effectively killing a United Nations  initiative
to streamline approvals of  badly needed equipment for Iraq"s oil
industry. Saeed Hasan contended that  Washington and London
rejected up  to 30 percent of the oil spare parts  and equipment that Iraq
and the Netherlands" oil  consulting firm, Saybolt International BV, had
presented  to a new panel of experts. The five-member panel was  created
by the U.N. Security Council to speed up efforts  for approving
equipment the United Nations says is vital  for Iraq"s dilapidated oil
industry. Some items can be  approved without council members"
consent, according to  a pre-approved list. But Hasan said the United
States and  Britain deleted up to 30 percent of the proposed items  from
the list. "These items were submitted on a project  basis, so when you
delete an item from a set of items for a  project, it makes the entire project
useless. We cannot  use the items until all of them on a project list are 
received," Hasan told Reuters. Iraq has been under  sanctions since it
invaded Kuwait 10 years ago. It is  permitted to sell unlimited quantities
of oil to pay for food,  medicine and other items under strict U.N.
supervision.  The United States is responsible for blocking most of the
items Security Council members must approve with  Britain putting on
hold about 10 percent. In this case, both  U.S. and British officials said
they only deleted "dual use"  items, which could be useful for military
purposes. But  Hasan said cutting the list by 30 percent could have an
impact on Iraq"s ability to produce oil. Iraq has a  sustainable export
capacity of about 2.4 million barrels  per day, industry experts say. The
rejected list of  equipment now needs approval on a case by case basis
by the Iraqi sanctions committee, which includes all 15  Security Council
members. The new panel so far has  approved four oil spare parts
contracts worth about  $800,000 since last week, said U.N. spokesman
John  Mills. Iraq is permitted to spend $1.2 billion on oil  equipment

----- ----- ----- -----


BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq has  informed the United Nations of a
Turkish  military build-up near its border, Iraqi  newspapers reported
Wednesday. The  Turkish army has entered northern Iraq in  the past to
pursue Kurdish separatists  fighting for autonomy in southeast  Turkey,
angering Baghdad. Quoting a  letter by Iraq"s Foreign Minister
Mohammed Saeed al-Sahaf to U.N. Secretary-General  Kofi Annan and
the Security Council, the newspapers  said a special Turkish brigade was
deployed in the area  opposite the Iraqi town of Kani Rash near the
shared  border of Iraq, Iran and Turkey. "The massing of such  troops
can only be viewed as part of preparations to push  into Iraq toward
Sidkan-Haj Omran region under different  pretexts," al-Sahaf said. He said
that Turkey had also  increased the number of troops it has already
stationed on  Iraqi territory. "These dubious operations and movements
by Turkish forces represent a new chain in the series of  recurrent acts of
aggression launched by these forces  against Iraq," he said. Al-Sahaf
said Iraq condemns  Turkey"s aggression and would hold Turkey
responsible  for their consequences. He urged the United Nations to
press Turkey to pull its troops out. Relations between  Turkey and Iraq
have been at a low ebb since the 1991  Gulf War in which Turkey was
part of the U.S.-led  coalition that forced Iraqi troops out of Kuwait.
Baghdad  has also protested against Turkey"s hosting U.S. and  British
warplanes that patrol an no-fly zone over northern Iraq.

----- ----- ----- -----

United Nations Office of the Iraq Programme

On 25 July 2000, the Secretary-General wrote to the President of the
Security Council, Ambassador Mignonette Patricia Durant (Jamaica),
advising that he has approved, the distribution plan for phase VIII,
submitted by the Government of Iraq, on the understanding that its
implementation would be governed by resolutions 986 (1995), 1284 (1999)
and 1302 (2000) and the Memorandum of Understanding concluded on
20 May 1996 between the United Nations and the Government of Iraq.

The total allocation for the humanitarian programme is $7.131 billion, with
$1.216 billion earmarked for food.  The other main allocations are $757
million for housing; $752 million for electricity and $600 million for oil
spare parts. The target set for the food basket is, for the first time, 2,472
kilocalories per person per day, as recommended by  the Secretary-
General in his supplementray report of February 1998 to the Security
Council (S/1998/90)

----- ----- ----- -----

25/07/00: IRAQ SANCTIONS FAR FROM OVER,1113,2-10-
Agence France Presse

Dubai - With 10 years already lost under  sanctions since the disastrous
invasion of  Kuwait, Iraq faces several more bleak decades to come with
or without President Saddam  Hussein.

 Potentially among the richest countries of the Middle East, due to its
wealth in oil and  water and once high education standards, Iraq today
ranks among the world's most  isolated and backward while having to
learn to rely on its own skills.

 On the eve of the 10th anniversary of the 2 August invasion, Iraq
analysts warn it will be  a long and painful road to recovery, even with a
lifting of sanctions and a change of  regime in Baghdad.

 "The outlook for Iraq is pretty awful. It will take virtually all of the 21st
century for Iraq to  re-emerge as a regional power," said Professor
Anoush Ehteshami, director of Middle  East studies at Britain's Durham

 "You can rebuild the infrastructure in 20 years or so, but not the people.
To equip them  for a modern economy, it will take many more decades,
and all the oil income in the world  will not help."

 Former UN humanitarian programme chiefs insist that the embargo has
backfired since  Iraq's ouster from Kuwait in the 1991 Gulf War, with the
Iraqi population of 22 million  paying a tragic price.

 "The sanctions have helped sustain the staying power of the regime and
given it an  effective system of control," said Ehteshami. "Everyone in
Iraq is dependent on the Iraqi  regime, which now has a stronger grip
than ever before."

 Khaldun al-Naqeeb, a political sciences professor at Kuwait University,
pointed out that  Iraq's economic future has been mortgaged for most of
the coming century because of  the hundreds of billions of dollars in
claims for war reparations.

 "I believe very strongly that a promise of outside financial help would
be an incentive for  the Iraqi people to get rid of Saddam Hussein, if they
can," he said, calling for the  international community to offer to limit the
massive reparations.

 But politically, even with a change of regime, "it's going to be a rather
bleak picture", he  said.

 "Any new regime is not likely to be democratic or liberal, although there
will be a larger  role for economic reforms and some political openness,"
predicted the professor, a  Kuwaiti of Iraqi origin.

 Naqeeb warned that a post-Saddam Iraq would likewise face "the real
and present danger  of being dismembered. Tribalism and sectarianism
will come to the fore as soon as there is  a sudden change".

 In the short term, Iraq has been offered a suspension of sanctions in
return for its full  co-operation with UNMOVIC, a new UN arms
inspection regime, under UN Security  Council resolution 1284.

 "Although Iraq has officially rejected (the resolution), it's possible Iraq
will be  encouraged to adjust its position in the next few months," said
Neil Patrick, head of the  Middle East programme of the Royal United
Services Institute in London.

 He said "constructive ambiguity in the resolution allows for future
negotiation of details"  and that "the new inspectorate will be easier for
Iraq" than the disarmament body  evacuated in December 1998 on the
eve of a US-British air campaign.

 But a former senior arms inspector said it was unlikely Iraq would co-
operate, especially  since the threat of military action has receded.

 "The sanctions are eroding anyway. For the regime, survival is its only
concern. The  status quo benefits them more since the regime now
controls everything," said Colonel  Terence Taylor of London's
International Institute for Strategic Studies.

 "As perceived from Baghdad, it does not have much to gain at the
moment from allowing  in a new inspection regime," said Taylor, who
served as an arms inspector between 1993  and 1998.

 "Saddam calculates he is secure from military attack. The threat of force
meant something  in the 1990s, now the whole political climate has

----- ----- ----- -----

BBC News

Sanctions against Iraq have condemned the country's  children to a life
of poverty, disease and insecurity,  says international aid agency Save
the Children.

 Peter Maxwell, the charity's programme director in  northern Iraq, said
malnutrition and child mortality  levels were slowly improving in the UN-
administered  north but worsening in central and southern areas
controlled by the government.

 The report was released ahead of the 10th anniversary  of Iraq's invasion
of Kuwait, which led to the imposition  of UN sanctions.

 "Significant numbers of  children are very  disadvantaged - girls tend
not to be educated from  the age of 14 onwards,  disabled children tend
to  be marginalised, rural  children tend not to get a  look at a decent
education." Mr Maxwell  said.

 Save the Children and the  Church of England say  their work on the
ground in Iraq has convinced them  that the negative effects of UN
sanctions outweigh any  political gains that might be claimed.

 Under the sanctions regime, Iraq is allowed Bagdad to  sell limited
amounts of oil to buy food, medicine and  other humanitarian supplies.

 The Church of England said special efforts should be  made to help the
children of Iraq to stop them growing  up to hate the rest of the world.

 But it also criticised Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

 Target Saddam

 Church aid spokesman Dr Charles Reed, who has just  returned from
Iraq, described the Iraqi leader as a  ruthless dictator.

 Both parties called on the international community to  stop the
sanctions and find ways to target the ruling  elite.

 Iraq says the sanctions are killing thousands of  children and have
called for an immediate end to them.

 According to the UN children's charity, UNICEF, about  half a million
children under the age of five have died in  Iraq since the sanctions were

----- ----- ----- -----

BBC News

New evidence compiled by a secret team of  investigators is being used
to try to indict a number of  senior Iraqi figures for alleged war crimes, the
BBC  has learned.

 Researchers for Indict - an organisation based in  London but financed
mainly by the US - lists figures  such as President Saddam Hussein, his
two sons,  and Iraq's deputy prime minister Tariq Aziz.

 Washington is seeking  international support for  prosecutions to be
brought  against them.

 European governments now  face increasing pressure to  detain any of
the listed Iraqis who arrive on their  territory.

 But the BBC's Middle East analyst says no-one  believes an arrest and
trial is likely in the near future.

 And despite the hard-line American rhetoric, many  observers feel that
Western policy on Iraq is not  succeeding.


 A leading British QC has advised that prosecutions  could be brought
either under the Geneva Convention  or the Torture Convention.

 He cannot be named for safety reasons.

 The chairwoman of Indict, the Labour MP Ann Clwyd,  told BBC Radio
4's Today programme: "As yet we  don't know whether the political will
exists in various  countries in Europe and indeed in the UK itself.

 "We have evidence where actions could be taken in  the UK.

 "This is a test of resolve of countries to do what they  say they want to
do and that is to bring Iraqi war  criminals to justice."


 The US war crimes ambassador, David Scheffer, has  said the Indict list
will also be used to try to persuade  the UN Security Council to set up a
war crimes  tribunal for Iraq.

 Indict has investigated an  A-list of 12 of the most  notorious Iraqi
leaders,  including Saddam, his two  sons and Mr Aziz, and a  B-list of 31
less prominent  people.

 One of the listed Iraqi  suspects was almost  arrested on a brief visit to
Vienna a year ago.

 Evidence covers atrocities  during wars against Iran and Kuwait, internal
 repression of political opponents, torture of prisoners  and attacks on
minorities including the Kurds.

 The announcement on Tuesday of the existence of the  dossier amounts
to a challenge to the Russian  government to act, as Mr Aziz is on a visit
to Moscow.

 War crimes tribunals have been set up to investigate  crimes in
Yugoslavia and Rwanda but Iraq has so far  remained untouched.

[See also

----- ----- ----- -----


KUWAIT (Reuters) - Kuwait's defense minister said on Tuesday he was
ready for talks with Iraq, the Gulf emirate's former occupier, in return for
the  release of Kuwaitis and others whom Kuwait says are still held by

 ``I have no objections to sitting with the Iraqis on condition they release
10  percent of prisoners of war and Kuwaiti hostages and others who
number  more than end this humanitarian issue,'' Sheikh Salem
Sabah al-Salem al-Sabah said.

 His speech was carried by the official Kuwait News Agency.

 The surprise announcement came almost 10 years after Iraq invaded
Kuwait on August 2, 1990, and occupied  it for seven months until its
forces were driven out by a U.S.-led multinational force.

 Sheikh Salem heads a state body in charge of seeking the release of 600
people missing since the conflict  whom Kuwait calls prisoners of war.

 Iraq has repeatedly denied holding the 600 people missing since the
1990-91 Gulf crisis.

 Sheikh Salem qualified his offer of talks by saying ``Kuwait would not
accept bilateral talks with Iraq except  under the umbrella of allied states''
which fought in the 1991 Gulf War to drive the Iraqis from Kuwait.

 Iraq ``must release several of our prisoners of war as a goodwill gesture,''
he added.

 Iraq has been boycotting a humanitarian committee trying to determine the fate
of the missing, objecting to the  participation of the United States, Britain,
and France, leading members of the coalition which drove it from  Kuwait.

 Sheikh Salem called on Iraq to attend the meetings sponsored by the
International Committee of the Red Cross  (ICRC) to end the ``humanitarian

 The United Nations has also called on Baghdad to cooperate with it in trying
to determine the fate of the  missing. The U.N. Security Council says that
accounting for the missing is one of the conditions Iraq must meet  before it
will lift sanctions imposed after its invasion of Kuwait.

 Baghdad says that Kuwait has withheld information on 1,150 missing Iraqis.

----- ----- ----- -----


Baghdad (Reuters) - Iraq yesterday repeated an offer of amnesty to those who
have left the country illegally. Iraq's highest legislative authority, the
Revolutionary Command Council, issued a decree in July 1999 granting amnesty to
illegal emigrants.

Munthir Al Mutlaq, head of the Consulate Department at the Iraqi Foreign
Ministry, said the decree had once again been distributed to all Iraq's
diplomatic missions abroad and issued on the Internet at the ministry's website.

"The decree gives all those who left the country due to the sanctions imposed
on Iraq or for other reasons the chance to return to their country," he said in
a statement carried by the Iraqi News Agency.

No official figures on illegal emigration are available, but UN economic
sanctions imposed for the 1990 invasion of Kuwait have prompted many
ordinary Iraqis and intellectuals to leave and seek jobs elsewhere.

----- ----- ----- -----


24/7/00: Various stories from CNN

This is a discussion list run by the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq
For removal from list, email
Full details of CASI's various lists can be found on the CASI website:

[Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq Homepage]