Iraqi President Saddam Hussein said a crippling sanctions regime was imposed on the country after its 1990 invasion of Kuwait because Baghdad opposed Washington's oil policy in the Gulf, newspapers quoted him as saying Wednesday.
"America aimed to extend its hegemony in the world by weakening other powers and all that remained to achieve that was to control oil," Saddam said during talks with Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov.
"Whoever controls oil will control the world and the only oil country to stand in the way of this policy is Iraq. For this reason it was hit and subjected to an embargo," the Iraqi leader said.
An international sanctions regime was imposed on Iraq by the UN Security Council after its invasion of Kuwait 10 years ago.
Saddam also denounced Washington's silence on Israel's repression of the uprising in the Palestinian territories.
"The whole world condemns what is happening in Palestine but America shamelessly opposes any resolution that would affect the Zionist entity," he said.
"We have been fighting America for 11 years and we know it lies and feels no shame before international public opinion for the bad things it does" -- BAGHDAD (AFP)
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