US presents resolution for end to almost all sanctions against Iraq
The United States and Britain Friday will put a resolution to the UN Security Council calling for an end to almost all sanctions against Iraq and give them control of the country's oil revenues for at least a year.
The US ambassador to the United Nations, John Negroponte, said he would present a draft resolution to the Security Council calling for the lifting of sanctions and for Iraq's oil revenues to be put in a special fund to be controlled by US-led occupying forces for 12 months. According to AFP, Negroponte said the United States wants the resolution adopted by June 3, when the current six-month phase of the oil-for-food programme expires.
The draft would immediately lift all UN sanctions imposed on Iraq after its invasion of Kuwait in August 1990, excepting an arms embargo. It would also set up an Iraqi Assistance Fund, to meet the humanitarian needs of the Iraqi people, for economic reconstruction, for the "continued disarmament of Iraq" and other purposes.
"The president wants the Security Council to act quickly and there is no need for a lengthy debate," White House spokesman Ari Fleischer told a press briefing in Washington.
But in Moscow a senior US envoy, Assistant Secretary of State Kim Holmes, failed to convince Russia to support lifting the UN sanctions.
Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov said sanctions that blocked humanitarian aid should be removed, but he insisted that a complete end to the economic blockade must take place in line with existing UN resolutions.
Deputy Foreign Minister Yury Fedotov said a full lifting of the sanctions still required proof that Iraq did "not possess weapons of mass destruction and the means of producing them." He called for UN inspectors to return to Iraq. (Albawaba.com)
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