Iraqi Deputy Premier and Minister of Finance Hikmat Al-Azawi has praised Egypt’s efforts to alleviate the suffering of the Iraqi people at a recent meeting in Egypt. He stated that he was eagerly awaiting President Mubarak's efforts to support Iraq, and its stand against “Smart Sanctions”, considering the President’s international standing.
According to Iraq, the volume of trade with Egypt under the Oil-for-Food program stands at $2.5 billion. This figure is expected to rise after the ratification of the free trade area between the two sides.
Smart Sanctions would involve a more rigorous system of border monitoring with a focus on weapons production. According to the UN, these sanctions would ease the burden on Iraqi civilians. Iraqi oil revenues and military-related imports would remain limited, while civilian products would flow freely.
Iraq, on the other hand, feels that the new program would simply pave the way for the return of UN weapons inspectors, and maintain sanctions indefinitely. –(MENA Report)
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