May 2003 – This report provides a brief overview of some of the issues associated with the lifting of UN sanctions in Iraq. It also notes that sanctions termination will be necessary in order to clarify procedures for the resumption of Iraqi oil exports and to remove trade and investment barriers that impede Iraq’s economic recovery. The stakes in this debate go far beyond the question of freeing trade, however. Fundamental issues of international law also hang in the balance. The verification of Iraq’s disarmament, the UN role in Iraq’s reconstruction and political transition, the prospects for restraining weapons proliferation in the region, and the fate of hundreds of billions of dollars of debt and compensation claims-all hinge on how sanctions are lifted.
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