Some Business Dealings Of Cpa In Iraq

Some Business Dealings of the CPA in Iraq may contravene International Law

I was glad finally to see some experts in international law raise questions about the American shock therapy plan for Iraq, which involves selling off state owned enterprises and allowing foreign firms to buy 100% of them and then immediately to export the profits out the country. It also deregulates all finance and banking. The Financial Times says questions were raised at a recent conference in London about whether for the Occupying authorities to take this step was legal under the Hague Regulations of 1907 and the Fourth Geneva Convention (I have argued that it is not).

The lawyers also point out that pre-existing contracts made by the Baath government still have legal force and may even been enforceable, so if the CPA re-awards the contracts the new ones may be challenged.

My own feeling is that the US should go to early elections in Iraq so as to have a legitimate Iraqi government that could make these decisions. Otherwise, it is no different from Lord Curzon ruling by fiat from Delhi in the colonial era.

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