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 Thursday, 19 December, 2002, 17:15 GMT
Russia and China 'broke Iraq embargo'
Iraqi officials seal suitcase used to transport declaration
The firms are named in the massive declaration
Russian and Chinese firms exported military equipment and know-how to Iraq despite a United Nations ban on arms sales, a German newspaper has reported.

The Tageszeitung (Taz) says parts of the Iraqi arms declaration which it has obtained show that three Russian and one Chinese company broke the embargo imposed after the end of the 1991 Gulf War.

COUNTRIES NAMED IN DECLARATION
USA
China
France
UK
Russia
Japan
Netherlands
Belgium
Spain
Sweden
Germany
The paper lists almost 60 companies from the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - the United States, United Kingdom and France, as well as China and Russia - which it says were involved in arming Iraq since the mid-1970s.

These companies assisted atomic, biological and chemical weapons development as well as aiding Iraq's missile and conventional arms programmes, according to Taz.

They too may have continued to supply Iraq after the embargo came into force, the paper alleges.

US indirect help

Documents from the UN inspections team (Unscom) show the Russian firm Livinvest, prepared to export equipment and parts for M-17 helicopters to Iraq, Taz reports.

However, the documents do not make it clear whether the equipment was in fact delivered.

Sarin rockets destroyed by Iraq after the Gulf War
Foreign firms are said to have provided chemical weapons equipment
Two other Russian companies, Mars Rotor and Niikhism sold parts for long-distance missiles to Iraq.

These were transported to Baghdad by a Palestinian middleman in July 1995, the paper reports.

The Chinese firm Huawei Technologies Co broke the embargo in 2000 and 2001 by supplying hi-tech fibreglass parts for air defence installations, according to Taz.

The paper suggests that contracts signed between Huawei Technologies Co and the US firms IBM and AT&T may mean that US know-how could have found its way into Iraqi technology.

The latest revelations come after a Taz article earlier in the week, which said that more than 80 German companies were listed in the Iraqi declaration - several of which were still involved in Iraq last year.

Thursday's article also says companies from Japan, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and Sweden are named in the declaration.


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07 Nov 02 | Europe
17 Dec 02 | Europe
10 Dec 02 | Middle East
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