Update on Economic Sanctions on Iraq and removal from Chapter VII
Sep 23, 2011
There are many rumors that Iraq has now finally emerged from chapter VII sanctions. I do not believe this has happened yet. Here are some relevant news reports:
First, President Talibani of Iraq gave a speech before the UN, in which he said:
In addition to this, we were able to get rid of the sanctions and restrictions imposed on Iraq as a result of the invasion of Kuwait. Based on Security Council Resolutions 1956, 1957 and 1958, adopted on 15 December 2010, Iraq has been freed completely from all of the restrictions imposed on it which have prevented the country from benefiting from scientific and technological advances, and Iraq has gained its sovereignty in regards to its financial resources. After this important stage in building the state, we feel that we are taking firm steps on the road of democracy and development and that we have a bigger need to open the doors of investment in Iraq.
This seems to imply a full release from the sanctions. However, if you read it more carefully, it says two relevant things:
Iraq has been freed completely from all of the restrictions imposed on it which have prevented the country from benefiting from scientific and technological advances, and....
Iraq has gained its sovereignty in regards to its financial resources
The scientific and technological restrictions were released last December (2010). Likewise, Iraq gained control of the food-for-oil fund, which are here called "its financial resources."
This does not say that Iraq has been FULLY RELEASED from the sanctions. It only tells us that they have been released from certain portions of those sanctions as of last December and then again this past June.
There was also another meeting that took place with the foreign minister, Zebari, where it was reported:
The Foreign Ministry statement received by all of Iraq [where] a copy of it on Thursday that “Zebari discussed with Bert ways to complete the process of Iraq emerges from the provisions of Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations and the extent of support and assistance provided by the United Kingdom in this area by virtue of the strong relationship that is bound countries and the fact that the United Kingdom a permanent member of UN Security Council."
This makes it quite clear that Iraq has not yet been fully released from the Chapter VII sanctions. Zebari is seeking suppport from the UK to have the final sanctions removed.
Having said that, the leaders of the Central Bank of Iraq (Shabibi and Saleh) are in Washington D.C. for talks. No doubt they are discussing the removal of sanctions as part of the discussions. So perhaps we are seeing some movement on this.