Parliamentary question - E-0282/2007Parliamentary question

UN Security Council Resolution 1483 and the want of medical treatment in Iraq

by Sajjad Karim (ALDE)
to the Commission

UN Security Council Resolution 1483 recognised the UK and US as occupying powers in Iraq, but also stated that they had to comply with the Geneva and Hague Conventions. These Conventions specifically require the occupying powers to maintain order and to look after the medical needs of the population. This, they have failed to do. Sick or injured children who could otherwise be treated by simple means, in some cases at a cost of as little as 95p, are being left to die in their hundreds. Save the Children estimates that 59 in 1000 newborn babies are dying in Iraq, one of the highest mortality rates in the world. Only 50 % of the pre-war total of doctors remains in Iraq, leading to a breakdown of health administration.

Since 1992, through ECHO, the EU has been the largest external source of humanitarian aid for Iraq after the United Nations-administered Oil-For-Food programme. In March 2003, a total of EUR 100 million was earmarked for humanitarian aid to Iraq. Of this, EUR 69.5 million was committed to humanitarian interventions in areas such as health, which was designated a priority for Commission assistance at the Madrid Reconstruction Conference 2003.

In this light, has the Commission pressed the UK, as one of the occupying powers designated by Resolution 1483 as Trustees of ‘The Development Fund for Iraq,’ to properly account for these assets estimated as USD 23 billion in May 2003, which should have supplied the means for hospitals to treat children properly? Is the Commission investigating allegations that, by June 2004, some USD 14 billion vanished in corruption, theft and payments to mercenaries? Does the Commission agree that all revenues from Iraq's oil exports should now pass directly to the Iraqi people and that illegal contracts entered into by the Coalition Provisional Authority should be revoked?

OJ C 293, 05/12/2007