Iraq will sue Britain, Kuwait and the United States in the World Court for human and material losses caused by the 10-year air embargo and blocked contracts, a newspaper reported Tuesday.
"Iraq will claim damages from Washington and London for human and material losses" caused by the air embargo," Al-Rafidain quoted the transport ministry's number two, Jamil Ibrahim al-Nayla, as saying.
"The air embargo has resulted in the death of 6,286 people, 59 of whom were Arabs (from Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan and Tunisia) and 19 other foreigners (from Iran, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Sweden)" in road accidents, Nayla said.
"Iraq will also claim damages for losses caused by blocked contracts" for the purchase of essential goods and equipment, "especially in the telecommunications sector", Nayla added.
"A complaint will also be filed against the Kuwaiti regime which has long advocated the blocking of contracts for buying necessary equipment for the repair of Iraq's telecommunications network."
Kuwait, Iraq's invasion of which in 1990 sparked the embargo, argues that the repair of the network would be a threat to other countries in the region, Nayla said.
Iraq's telephone network, a large part of which was installed by the French group Alcatel in the 1980s, was hit hard during the 1991 Gulf War, and it has never recovered to previous levels.
Iraq exports more than 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) under the UN-supervised oil-for-food program, initiated in late 1996 to allow Baghdad to sell crude to finance imports of food, medicine and other essential goods including oil industry spare parts – BAGHDAD (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)