U.N. Panel OKs Kuwait Compensation
%mlink(STRY:; PHOTO:; AUDIO:%)
GENEVA (AP) _ The U.N. panel overseeing compensation to victims of Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait has approved a further $4.74 billion in claims for damages, mainly for Kuwaiti companies, ministries and individuals, a spokesman said Friday.
The Thursday decision means that the U.N. Compensation Commission has approved payouts totaling $42.6 billion to offset losses from the 1990 invasion of Kuwait.
U.N. spokesman Joe Sills said that $14.8 billion of this had actually been released to governments for distribution to claimants. The next installment, of some $600 million, is expected to be paid out early July.
The awards are funded through the U.N. oil-for-food program. The compensation fund currently receives 25 percent of the revenue Iraq earns through the sale of oil permitted by the U.N. Security Council. Iraq is allowed to use the rest for humanitarian goods for Iraqis suffering under U.N. sanctions.
The commission is made up of representatives of the 15 Security Council members.
Sills said that of the compensation approved Thursday, $4.48 billion goes to Kuwait and the rest to various other countries, including Saudi Arabia, and international insurance companies. Of the money going to Kuwait, $1.58 billion is for its national oil company, and the rest for the government and other companies.