Report: Anti-war nations accepted Saddam oil bribes
Iraq’s US-appointed governing council will investigate claims that dozens of Western and Arab political figures accepted oil bribes in exchange for supporting Saddam Hussein prior to the war.
Baghdad’s Al-Mada newspaper recently disclosed a list obtained from the Ministry of Oil citing 46 individuals, organizations and companies that allegedly received millions of barrels of oil from the former Iraqi leader as a reward for backing an end to sanctions. Among the accused are politicians and religious bodies from anti-war countries such as France and Russia.
The list names former French interior minister Charles Pasqua as a recipient of 12 million barrels of crude oil in the 1990s. Pasqua denied knowing that any such transactions were taking place. “I have never received any gifts from the Iraqi government and I am not in the habit of making my decisions on the basis of any remuneration I might receive,” he told French television.
Also included on the list are the Russian Orthodox Church and the Russian Communist Party. Members of Arab ruling families and political parties from Egypt, Jordan, Syria, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Turkey, Sudan, China and Austria have also been implicated.
Saddam smuggled billions of dollars worth of oil to neighboring states, violating the United Nations (UN) oil-for-food regulations. Truck tankers would smuggle oil to Turkey and barges would transfer crude to Iran across the Fao Peninsula. — (menareport.com)
© 2004 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)