- BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraq
said on Friday that more than 1.6 million people had died as a result of
economic sanctions imposed on Baghdad since 1990 by the United Nations,
the state Iraqi News Agency (INA) said.
- The agency was quoting from a letter sent from Iraq's
U.N. mission to Kofi Annan, secretary-general of the United Nations.
- "A total of 1,614,203 people, out of them 667,773
children under the age of five have died since the imposition of sanctions
in 1990 until November 2001," INA quoted the letter as saying.
- The letter said there had been only 258 deaths among
under fives in 1989, a year before sanctions were imposed.
- It blamed the rise in the death rate on delays by U.S.
and British representatives to the U.N. Security Council's sanctions
in approving the purchase of medicine and medical equipment.
- Iraq says the embargo, imposed as punishment for
1990 invasion of Kuwait, has ruined its infrastructure and caused living
standards to fall.
- Under the existing oil-for-food programme, Iraq is
to sell oil to buy food, medicine and other supplies to ease the impact
of the U.N. sanctions. A list of such supplies has to be approved by the
- London and Washington have been trying since last June
to get approval of the U.N. Security Council to revamp the sanctions regime
but their effort was blocked by Russia.
- The U.S.-British "smart sanctions" plan sought
to ease restrictions on civilian goods, retain a ban on military hardware
and review a list of 'dual use' supplies that could be used for both
and civilian purposes.
- Baghdad wants the sanctions lifted or at least made
and objects to any system which would perpetuate them.
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