The financial advisor to the Iraqi prime minister has revealed that his country has so far paid out $49.5 billion to Kuwait in compensation for the destruction of oil fields and facilities during the 1990-91 Gulf War.
In an interview with Iraq's Al-Sabah newspaper, Dr Mazhar Muhammad Saleh explained that Baghdad has still to pay the balance of the $52 billion claimed by the Kuwaiti government.
According to Saleh, three per cent of Iraq's oil revenues are deducted and used to pay the compensation through a bank account run by the Federal Reserve Bank in New York. This was dictated by UN Security Council Resolution 1483 in May 2003.
"The compensation is currently paid through the UN Compensation Fund," Saleh pointed out. He expects the balance to be paid within a year or perhaps a little longer, depending on the recovery of oil prices.