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(en) US, N.Y. Police Arrest Dozens Protesting IraqSanctions

From DAMN <damn@tao.ca>
Date Tue, 15 Feb 2000 06:10:27 -0500


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Police arrested 86 people in front of the U.S. Mission to the United
   Nations on Monday after they refused to move during a protest against
   U.N. sanctions against Iraq.
   
   The demonstrators were charged with disorderly conduct, said police
   officer Valerie St. Rose.
   
   The rally came on the same day U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan
   accepted the resignation of the world body's humanitarian coordinator
   in Iraq, Hans von Sponeck. Von Sponeck has been a severe critic of
   sanctions and the U.N. relief program for Iraqis.
   
   Iraq has been barred from selling oil, its most precious commodity, on
   the open market since U.N. sanctions were imposed after its 1990
   invasion of Kuwait. Under U.N. resolutions, the sanctions cannot be
   lifted until Iraq has rid itself of weapons of mass destruction.
   
   The U.N. Security Council created the oil-for-food program in 1996 to
   enable Iraq to sell limited amounts of oil to buy food, medicine and
   other essential goods for its people.
   
   The program, however, has been unable to meet all of the Iraqis'
   needs, and U.N. reports consistently speak of high malnutrition rates
   among Iraqis, particularly the children.
   
   Monday's rally marked the ninth anniversary of a Persian Gulf War
   bombing that Iraq said killed more than 300 civilians. Baghdad has
   maintained the building was a civilian shelter, but U.S. officials
   said they targeted the structure because it was a military command
   center.



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