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UN rules Iraq must compensate Kuwait oil company $240m

Published: April 24, 2019
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A UN panel has ruled that Kuwait’s national oil company be compensated $240 million for losses incurred during Iraq’s 1990-1991 invasion.

Since 2005, the United Nations Compensation Commission says it has paid $48.3 billion to countries and organisations affected by the 1990 Iraqi invasion.

Iraq currently sets aside 1.5% of its oil export sales for the fund.

Over 1.5 million claims have been brought by over 100 governments and international organisations. Only one remains to be paid in full.

The claim from the Kuwait Petroleum Corporation, which this $240 million is part of, totals $14.7 billion. It seeks compensation for oil production and sales losses from the damage to its oil fields.

Iraq invaded its neighbouring Gulf state on the 2 August 1990, resulting in a seven-month occupation. These events and the subsequent military response from a 35-nation coalition, led by the US, are most commonly known as the First Gulf War.

In a “scorched earth policy”, the Iraqi forces set fire to nearly 700 oil wells and placed landmines along the fields as they retreated.

It was reported that then President Saddam Hussein’s intentions were to avoid repaying the $14 billion Iraq had borrowed from Kuwait to finance the Iraq-Iran war.

During the invasion, 420 Kuwaitis were killed.

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