$1 billion worth goods to reach Iraq under reactivated Oil-for-Food program
The United Nations (UN) office overseeing the humanitarian Oil-for-Food program in Iraq has identified over one billion dollars worth of goods and supplies as potential priorities for delivery to Iraq over the next 45 days, reported the UN News Service.
According to the Office of the Iraq Program (OIP), the deliveries would come under the recent adjustments to the suspended program, which allows Iraq to use part of its oil revenues to buy humanitarian supplies and on which 60 percent of the population depend as its sole source for food.
The program was temporarily halted on March 17 following the withdrawal of all UN staff from Iraq on the eve of hostilities until last Friday, when the Security Council adopted a new resolution giving Secretary-General Kofi Annan more authority to administer the operation for the next 45 days.
The initial assessment by the OIP and UN relief agencies has identified more than 450 contracts for medication, health supplies, foodstuffs, water and sanitation and other materials identified by the Council as priorities for shipment, the office said.
The contracts are held by suppliers from some 40 countries representing almost every region of the world. The ongoing review of contracts in the Oil-for-Food pipeline includes priority goods already in transit by land and sea, and priority items approved but not yet shipped that stand the greatest chance of being accelerated in the pipeline to reach their destination within the 45-day window provided by the resolution, according to the OIP. — (menareport.com)
© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)