World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


U.S. Confiscates Iraqi Bank Balances

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
March 20, 2003

Message to the Congress of the United States

March 20, 2003


Pursuant to section 204(b) of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, 50 U.S.C. 1703(b) (IEEPA), and section 301 of the National Emergencies Act, 50 U.S.C. 1631, I hereby report that I have taken additional steps with respect to the national emergency declared in Executive Order 12722 of August 2, 1990, by exercising my statutory authority to confiscate and vest certain property of the Government of Iraq and its agencies, instrumentalities, or controlled entities.

Consistent with section 203(a)(1)(C) of IEEPA, 50 U.S.C. 1702(a)(1)(C), as added by section 106 of the USA PATRIOT ACT, Public Law 107-56, I have ordered that certain blocked funds held in the United States in accounts in the name of the Government of Iraq, the Central Bank of Iraq, Rafidain Bank, Rasheed Bank, or the State Organization for Marketing Oil are hereby confiscated and vested in the Department of the Treasury. I have made exceptions for any such funds that are subject to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations or the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, or that enjoy equivalent privileges and immunities under the laws of the United States, and are or have been used for diplomatic or consular purposes. In addition, such amounts that, as of the date of the order, are subject to post-judgment writs of execution or attachment in aid of execution of judgments pursuant to section 201 of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (Public Law 107-297) are not being vested, provided that, upon satisfaction of the judgments on which such writs are based, any remainder of such excepted amounts shall, without further action, be confiscated and vested.

I have delegated to the Secretary of the Treasury authority to undertake all other action of the President and all functions of the President set forth in section 203(a)(1)(C) of IEEPA with respect to any and all property of the Government of Iraq, including its agencies, instrumentalities, or controlled entities, and to take additional steps, including the promul-gation of rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this order.

I am enclosing a copy of the Executive Order I have issued, which is effective immediately.

I have exercised these authorities in furtherance of Executive Orders 12722 and 12724 with respect to the unusual and extraordinary threat to our national security and foreign policy posed by the policies and actions of the Government of Iraq. I intend that such vested property should be used to assist the Iraqi people and to assist in the reconstruction of Iraq, and have determined that such use would be in the interest of and for the benefit of the United States.

The power to vest assets of a foreign government with which the United States is engaged in armed hostilities is one that has been recognized for many decades. This power is being used here because it is clearly in the interests of the United States to have these funds available for use in rebuilding Iraq and launching that country on the path to speedy economic recovery. In addition, this authority is being invoked in a limited way, designed to minimize harm to third parties and to respect existing court orders as much as possible.



March 20, 2003.

# # #

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Mexico: Violence And Repression Of Teachers

The member organizations of Network for Peace express our indignation over the acts of repression that the Mexican State has carried out, through the police forces... In Chiapas, Guerrero and Oaxaca, the conflict has resulted in murders of teachers and civilians as well as hundreds of wounded and dozens of people arrested. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Britain's Pleas For Mercy

So… Boris Johnson is promising that he won't be holding a snap general election, if he's chosen as the next UK Conservative Party leader. Reportedly, he is even making that promise a feature of his leadership campaign, since a vote for Boris would therefore mean (wink wink) that his colleagues wouldn't have to risk their jobs and face the wrath of the British public until 2020. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news