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Iraq Blockade Item Lists
Against World Empire
Editor's Update--In 2000 Washington relented (under heavy European pressure) and allowed some reconstruction supplies to be imported for Iraq's bombed out irrigation, sanitation, and agricultural installations. 90% of Iraq's electricity generation facilities had also been destroyed. On Nov. 28th, 2001 we called the United Nations Iraq sanctions office and learned that $1 Billion of supplies to reconstruct electric generation has been "on hold" since nearly a year. Two years later Washington was blocking $5 billion of approved imports. Any UN Security Council member can put Iraq imports "on hold," but so far it was always Washington which did it. For more on sanctions see link at bottom of page.
A LITTLE LIST OF PROHIBITED IMPORTS INTO IRAQ
by Elias Davidsson
22 December 1997
Courtesy of Iraq Action Coalition
Here are some of the products which the Security Council of the United Nations considers that the Iraqi civilian population are not entitled to, because they are not considered as full human beings. Your country, by special regulations that are not widely known in your country, endorses and enforces this collective punishment of the Iraqi population.
The list includes mainly consumer products which are now available to the world's population without any restriction. It must be added that in order to impoverish Iraq and make its population dependent upon foreign imports, raw materials, machines and tools for industry and agriculture are also prohibited by the United Nations, unless the Iraqi government can prove, on a case by case base, that a specific consignment is urgently required for 'humanitarian' needs.
I urge readers of this list to imagine themselves being denied all the following products for a period of more than 7 years. This should give a small idea of what we are doing to the Iraqis. If there is any mistake in the list or any important consumer product category missing, please inform me (Elias Davidsson, email: firstname.lastname@example.org).
Balls (for children, for sport)
Books (all categories included)
Canvas (yes, there are also painters in Iraq, didn't you know ?)
Colors for painting
Compressors (for cooling equipment) (Iraq is a hot country)
Computers and computer supplies
Cups Desk lamps
Ink (read: The prohibition on writing)
Magazines (including scientific and medical journals)
Paper for printing
Paper for wrapping
Paper for writing
Radiators for cars
Toilet paper (not considered medicines)
Toys (read: UN punishment of children)
[Top] [ Body of Article ] [ List of Items] [ Post Script] [End] [Iraq
The UN Sanctions Committee has not issued any comprehensive list of prohibited products, as such a list would include millions of articles. Instead the Sanctions Committee evaluates applications for exporting goods to Iraq on the base of Security Council Resolutions which allow foodstuffs, medicines and products for essential civilian needs. Anything not deemed 'essential' by the members of the Sanctions Committee is denied to the Iraqi population.
The Committee has the sole discretion in determining what is essential for every Iraqi. Decisions by the Committee are made behind closed doors. Any one Committee member may veto a permission. Applications for the export of items to Iraq must be made by the potential exporter to the authorities of individual UN member states who then forward the application to the UN Sanctions Committe in New York. The Committee will then assess the qualification of the application, that is whether it is food, medicine or an 'essential civilian need', determine that the Iraqi government has also endorsed the transaction, check prices and delivery conditions, and if everything is OK, forward its approval to the authorities of the country where the application came from. The authorities then inform the applicant. Only then is it possible to ship the items.
Before being sent, public officials must check that the items concur in quality and quantity to the document approved by the Sanctions Committee. Any discrepancy results in the delaying the shipment. It must be added that the quantity of food and medicines "allowed" to Iraq is not more than about a third of what was imported to Iraq before the onset of the sanctions. In other words, the United Nations expect Iraqis to live with less than half the food and medicine intake they had at the time when Saddam Hussein ruled without UN intervention. The lawyers of the Security Council members have studied carefully the requirements of international humanitarian law. By designing into the sanctions regime 'humanitarian exceptions' as provided by the 'food-for-oil' deal, the members of the Security Council attempt to preempt charges of causing the death of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis by starvation and health hazards. By providing the very minimum for physical subsistence to the Iraqi population, lives are not anymore expended by the thousands. This is a step forward away from sheer genocide. The Security Council's conception of Iraqis is nevertheless that they are not human beings but a herd of 20 million sheep whose minimal needs are reduced to foodstuffs, medicines and some undefined 'essential civilian needs' to be determined at a closed committee meetings by well-groomed gentlemen in New York.
For more information on Sanctions please see http://againstbombing.com/#SANCTIONS
See Also How Washington
Holds up and Vetoes Iraq Civilian