HL IRAQ SAYS SANCTIONS DESTROYING COUNTRY
LEADERS IN BAGHDAD COMPLAIN THAT PEOPLE ARE DYING BECAUSE IRAQ CAN"T AFFORD MUCH-NEEDED SUPPLIES.
SO ORLANDO SENTINEL (ORSE)
Edition: CENTRAL FLORIDA
Section: A SECTION
Origin: BAGHDAD, IRAQ
LP Iraq complained to a U.N. envoy Wednesday that the country was unable to buy urgently needed food and medicine because its coffers were padlocked by sanctions. * Cabinet ministers told U.N. representative Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan that billions of dollars of assets were frozen by U.N. sanctions, imposed after the August 1990 invasion of Kuwait, and that young and old were dying needlessly, officials said.
TX But Sadruddin, representing U.N. Secretary-General Javier Perez de Cuellar, said he was optimistic that he would succeed in extending humanitarian aid arrangements, scheduled to expire at the end of the year. The government has told Iraq"s 18 million people, already facing rampant inflation because of shortages, that they must tighten their belts further as winter sets in. Some officials say Iraq has enough grain to last only three months. The government made public a $1.4 billion shopping list of drugs and medical equipment it said it had ordered but could not buy because $4 billion of its assets were frozen by hostile governments. The list was made available to journalists and given to Sadruddin"s delegation together with a $2 billion list of basic items ranging from rice to detergents that Baghdad says it also ordered but could not pay for. Iraq rejects U.N. Resolution 706, which would allow it to sell limited amounts of oil to buy essential medicine and food under strict U.N. monitoring. Baghdad argues that it would get less than $900 million for the sale of $1.6 billion of crude and that some of the revenue would be used to pay for the unwelcome presence and administrative costs of U.N. staff in Iraq. Baghdad resents the U.N. presence and has complained that Resolution 706 would turn it into a colony of the world organization. U.N. sources said the government had suggested it believed some U.N. personnel might be gathering intelligence. The U.N. has officials of several humanitarian agencies stationed in the troubled Kurdish north and Shiite south where Iraqi President Saddam Hussein"s troops crushed post-Gulf War uprisings. The U.N. also has sent teams to Iraq that are seeking to scrap the country"s weapons of mass destruction under Gulf War cease-fire terms.
@Art: PHOTO: Iraqi people line up for food and fuel in the Kurdish town of Arbat as inflation and economic sanctions cripple the country. ASSOCIATED PRESS
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