Dominicans for Justice and Peace: Impact of UN Sanctions on children in Iraq

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Philippe LeBlanc, OP, recently completed a report on the United Nations sanctions and their impact on Iraqi children. Fr. Phil is a former permanent delegate of the Dominican Order at the UN in Geneva (1996–2006) with ECOSOC Special Consultative status at the United Nations.

 

 

 

 

 
 
THE IMPACT OF UN SANCTIONS ON THE CHILDREN IN IRAQ
Dominicans for Justice and Peace
A DECADE OF DOMINICAN PRESENCE
AT
THE UNITED NATIONS IN GENEVA
1996 - 2006
THE UNITED NATIONS AT A CHALLENGING PERIOD

 

The Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), Dominicans for Justice and Peace, was one of the NGOs at the 1996 United Nations Commission on Human Rights in Geneva that raised the issue of UN sanctions and their destructive effect on children in Iraq. The Dominican’s public interventions prompted member states to debate the issue in public at the UN Commission.

In 1996, an organization of world leaders led by former U.S. Attorney General, Ramsey Clark, declared sanctions as war. Ramsey Clark described the sanctions as the most brutal form of war because they punish an entire population, targeting children, and the future, most of all. Sanctions are a weapon of mass destruction. Since sanctions were imposed on Iraq, half a million children under the age of five had died of malnutrition and preventable diseases. Sanctions impose artificial famine. A third of Iraq’s surviving children were left with stunted growth and nutritional deficiencies that will deform their shortened lives. [The impact of sanctions on Iraq; the children are dying. Reports by UN Food and Agriculture Organization; Ramsey Clark; Published in1996 by World View Forum, Inc. New York (with permission).

The impact of UN Sanctions on Iraq in the nineties was disastrous for the Iraqi population, especially for the children who were targeted and it was also seen as one of the lowest periods of the United Nations. To this day the use of sanctions by the United Nations remains an issue in the world to such a point that the UN, USA and other countries need to come to grips with them for the purpose of ending them. The UN needs to look again at sanctions and seriously promote ending the use of sanctions as a weapon of war…worldwide.

. Read report (PDF)