Iraqi Minister to Kuwait For Talks on War Compensation

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Agence France Presse

Iraqi Minister to Kuwait For Talks on War Compensation

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Iraqi Finance Minister Bayan Jabr Solagh attends an exclusive interview with AFP at his office in Baghdad in July 2008. (AFP/File/Sabah Arar)

BAGHDAD - Iraq's Finance Minister Bayan Jabr Solagh has left for Kuwait to discuss compensation Baghdad has to pay its neighbour for the 1990 invasion by dictator Saddam Hussein, the government said on Sunday.

"The minister will discuss with Kuwaiti officials issues relating to debt and compensation," a government statement said.

Kuwait has claimed damages from Iraq for the invasion and seven-month occupation by Saddam's forces, which were later pushed out in 1991 by a US-led coalition.

Iraq is required to pay five percent of its oil revenue into a fund created by the UN Security Council to pay compensation for war damage linked to the Kuwait campaign.

Iraq in April called on Gulf states to waive the compensation, which runs into hundreds of billions of dollars.

Figures released at the time showed the UN compensation fund has received claims worth 354 billion dollars, but had approved just over 52 billion dollars, of which around 45 billion dollars are for Kuwait.

The fund has paid out more than 21 billion dollars, around 11 billion dollars of it for Kuwait.

Sunday's government statement also said that one of the issues that Solagh would discuss with Kuwait was why the Gulf nation was holding back two civilian aircraft that Baghdad had purchased from a Canadian company.

It did not offer further details.

Saddam was toppled during the 2003 US-led invasion of Iraq and executed for crimes against humanity in December 2006.

 

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