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April 18, 1991: Iraq provides initial declaration required under UN resolution 687, declares some chemical weapons and materials and 53 Al-Hussein and Scud type long-range ballistic missiles. Iraq declares it has no biological weapons program.
April 27, 1991: In a second declaration regarding nuclear weapons, Iraq admits to having some nuclear materials in addition to those known by the IAEA.
May 7, 1991: In two separate incidents 10 minutes apart, an A-10 and an F-16 reported coming under antiaircraft artillery fire while over northern Iraq.
May 16, 1991: Iraq submits revised declarations covering chemical weapons and ballistic missiles, increasing the number of items declared.
June 6, 1991: The last Operation Provide Comfort border camp closed.
June 7, 1991: The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees assumes responsibility for the refugee camps constructed by Combined Task Force Provide Comfort in northern Iraq.
June 9, 1991: UNSCOM begins its first chemical weapons inspection.
June 27, 1991: As Provide Comfort ground units began their withdrawal from northern Iraq, US officials reiterated their earlier ban on Iraqi flights north of the 36th parallel.
Summer 1991: Iraq destroys WMD equipment and documentation in an effort at concealment of pre-war work.
June 17, 1991: Security Council resolution 699 confirms that the Special Commission and the IAEA have a continuing authority to conduct activities under section C of resolution 687.
23-28 June 1991: During the second IAEA inspection (22 June 3 July 1991), Iraq obstructs access to items prohibited under the terms of the cease-fire. UNSCOM/IAEA inspectors try to intercept Iraqi vehicles carrying nuclear related equipment (Calutrons). Iraqi personnel fire shots to prevent the inspectors from approaching the vehicles. The equipment is later seized and destroyed under international supervision.
June 28, 1991: Statement by the President of the Security Council deploring Iraq’s denial of access to an inspection site and asking the Secretary-General to send a high-level mission to Baghdad immediately (S/22746).
June 30, 1991 UNSCOM begins its first missile inspection.
July 7-18, 1991: The third IAEA inspection uncovers large stocks of natural uranium and 15 kilograms of highly enriched uranium, and reveals the existence of various uranium enrichment programs.
July 15, 1991: Combined Task Force Provide Comfort withdraws from northern Iraq. A residual force remains in Turkey to deter Iraqi reprisals against the Kurds.
July 24, 1991: Operation Provide Comfort ends; the task force had delivered more than 17,000 tons of supplies (6,000 tons airdropped, 6,500 tons by helicopter, and the rest by surface transport). Meanwhile, Operation Provide Comfort II commences as a show of force to deter Iraqi attacks on the Kurds, with only limited humanitarian aspects to its mission.
August 2-8, 1991: UNSCOM conducts its first biological inspection of Iraqi facilities and uncovers a major biological program. Iraq declares to the first biological inspection team that it had conducted "biological research activities for defensive military purposes". Seed stocks of three biological warfare agents are handed over to the team, and the team removes three further potential warfare strains.
August 8-15, 1991: Iraq discloses the existence of a supergun and other banned missile related materials.
August 15, 1991: Security Council resolution 707 demands that Iraq provide without further delay full, final and complete disclosures of its proscribed weapons and programs, as required by resolution 687. UNSCR 706 authorizes Iraqi to sell oil for humanitarian goods, but is not accepted by the Government of Iraq.
September, 1991: Former US Marine intelligence officer Scott Ritter is hired as an UNSCOM inspector. Over the next seven years he would take part part in more than 30 inspection missions, 14 of them as chief. He will become one of the most controversial figures in the story of the war.
September 6, 1991: The first UNSCOM inspection team which intended to use helicopters is blocked by Iraq.
September 19, 1991: UNSCR 712 allows for a partial lifting of the embargo and would enables Iraq to sell limited quantities of oil and use the proceeds for humanitarian purposes. In return, Iraq must consent to strict UN monitoring of the contracts and distribution of humanitarian goods bought with the oil revenues. Iraq refuses.
September 21-30, 1991: IAEA inspectors find large amounts of documentation relating to Iraq's efforts to acquire nuclear weapons. The Iraqi officials confiscate some documents from the inspectors. The inspectors refuse to yield a second set of documents. In response, Iraq refuses to allow the team to leave the site with these documents. A four-day stand-off during which the team remained in the parking lot of the site ensues.
September 23, 1991: President of the Security Council issues a statement concerning Iraq’s failure to provide unconditional acceptance of resolution 707 (SC/5306 - IK54). Iraq permits the team to leave with the documents following the statement, which threatens enforcement action by members of the Council.
October 1-9, 1991: UNSCOM destroys Iraq's supergun at Jabal Hamran and a start is made on the destruction of components of other superguns.
October 11, 1991: Responding to Iraq's consistent efforts to interrupt or block inspection teams, the U.N. Security Council passes Resolution 715. The resolution says Iraq must "accept unconditionally the inspectors and all other personnel designated by the Special Commission".
October 1991: Iraq states that it considers the Ongoing Monitoring and Verification Plans, adopted by resolution 715 to be unlawful and states that it is not ready to comply with resolution 715.
October 14, 1991: Iraq officially admits research and studies are under way on nuclear weaponization.
October 25 , 1991: Report by Executive Chairman of UNSCOM:
Iraq acknowledged possessing 46,000 filled chemical weapons stored at various sites throughout Iraq.November 18 - December 1, 1991: UNSCOM finds more than 100 items of chemical bomb making material hidden in a sugar factory in Mosul and undeclared material for SCUD missiles.
Conclusive documentary evidence was found at two Iraqi facilities showing Iraq had a program for developing nuclear weapons.
In the course of inspection of Tammuz (Al Taqqadum) Air Base, 200 aerial bombs filled with mustard agent were counted and recorded.
The team examined 30 chemical filled ballistic missile warheads declared by Iraq in the Dujayl area. 14 were binary type filled with isopropanol and cyclohexanol with only DF needing to be added to produce nerve agent prior to use. 56 plastic containers of DF were found. Iraq stated 16 warheads were filled with a mixture of GB and GF nerve agents.
At Al Bakr Air Base, 25 type 250 gauge aerial bombs and 135 type 500 aerial bombs filled with mustard agent were declared by Iraq.
At Al Taji, 6,000 empty aluminum containers intended for filling with nerve agent and inserted into 122-millimeter warheads were found.
At Al Fallujah Proving Ground, Iraq declared the storage of 6,394 mustard-filled 155-millimeter artillery shells. Analysis confirmed the presence of mustard agent.
Of the 14 warheads mentioned above as being filled with chemicals, just prior to their destruction, the senior Iraqi official present said 4 were filled with the nerve agent Sarin.
Iraq has declared 6,120 sarin nerve agent filled 122-millimeter rocket warheads and their attendant motors.
Iraq provided seed stocks of biological warfare agents to the team consisting of Clostridium botulinum, Clostridium perfringens and Bacillus anthracis. Iraq also possessed the following micro-organisms-Brucellus abortus, Brucella melitensis, Francisella tularensis and various strains of Clostridium botulinum.
At one undisclosed site, 30 SCUD warheads filled with chemicals were found.
December 4, 1991: Second report of the Executive Chairman of UNSCOM:
Iraq's recent record in the nuclear area is consistent with, if less dramatic than, its actions over the last six months that included the concealment of evidence of plutonium separation, of uranium enrichment, and of nuclear weapons development, of refusal to permit inspection teams to enter some sites and exit others, and confiscation of documents from inspectors in the course of an inspection.
At Al Tuz, Khamisiyah, and Muhammadiyat numbers of munitions were discovered, including but not limited to 122 mm rockets, which were considered to be in too unsafe a condition to move and for which a drilling and draining (of nerve agent) would be very hazardous.
January 1992: Boutros Boutros-Ghali of Egypt becomes UN Secretary General.
January 27 - February 5, 1992: UNSCOM verifies delivery of chemical bomb-making equipment to Al Muthanna and concludes additional tests are needed prior to destruction of nerve agents.
February 18, 1992: Special report of the Executive Chairman of UNSCOM regarding the visit of a special mission to Baghdad on 27 January 1991, recording that Iraq was rejecting any obligations imposed on it by Council resolutions 707 (1991) and 715 (1991) (S/23606).
February 19, 1992: Statement by the President of the Security Council approving the report of the special mission and expressing grave concern over Iraq’s failure to acknowledge its obligations under resolution 715 (1991) and the plans for ongoing monitoring and verification, and supporting a decision to despatch a further special mission to Baghdad (S/23609).
February 21 - March 24, 1992: The first chemical destruction team destroys 463 nerve agent filled rockets, i.e. approximately 2.5 tons of agent.
February 28, 1992 Statement by the President of the Security Council, upon receipt of the special Commission’s report, reaffirming that it is for UNSCOM alone to determine which items are to be destroyed under resolution 687, and condemning Iraq’s failure to provide full compliance with the relevant Security Council resolutions (S/23663).
March 19, 1992: Iraq declares having more previously undeclared ballistic missiles, chemical weapons and associated material, and says they unilaterally destroyed this material in the summer of 1991 in violation of resolution 687.
April 5, 1992: Iranian warplanes attack rebel bases inside Iraq. Iraq responds by scrambling fighters and (unsuccessfully) pursuing the intruders. Combined Task Force Provide Comfort does not interfere. The Iraqis continued to fly on succeeding days, effectively overturning the ban on all their flying which they had observed since 22 March 1991.
April 9, 1992: Iraq calls for a halt of UNSCOM's aerial surveillance flights, making reference to the possibility that the aircraft and its pilot would be endangered.
April 10, 1992: Statement by the President of the Security Council concerning Iraq’s threats to the safety and security of UNSCOM’s aerial surveillance flights over Iraq and reaffirming UNSCOM's right to conduct such flights (S/23803). Subsequently, Iraq affirms that it does not intend to carry out any military action aimed at UNSCOM's aerial flights.
May 1992: May 1992 Iraq provides its first Full, Final and Complete Disclosures for its prohibited biological and missile programs. Iraq admits to having had only a "defensive" biological weapons program.
June 1992: Iraq provides its first Full, Final and Complete Disclosure for its prohibited chemical weapons programme.
July 1992: UNSCOM begins the destruction of large quantities of Iraq's chemical weapons and production facilities.
July 6-29, 1992: Iraq refuses an inspection team access to the Iraqi Ministry of Agriculture. UNSCOM had reliable information that the site contained archives related to proscribed activities. On July 6 the President of the Security Council issues a statement regarding the refusal by Iraq to permit the UNSCOM inspection team entry into the Ministry of Agriculture and stating that Iraq’s denial constitutes a material and unacceptable breach of resolution 687 (S/24240). Access was thereafter obtained. Evidence gathered from the Ministry is consistent with the removal of items during the period the team was denied entry.
August 14, 1992: Pres. Bush orders the Pentagon to begin emergency airlifts of food to Somalia, a nation suffering from severe famine and factional warfare.
August 26, 1992: President George Bush announces a decision by a coalition of U.N. forces to begin surveillance operations in Iraq below the 32nd parallel. The goal was to ensure Iraq’s compliance with UNSCR 688. To facilitate the monitoring, the coalition barred all Iraqi fixed and rotary wing aircraft from flying over the surveillance area. With the president’s announcement, U.S. Central Command activated Joint Task Force Southwest Asia, a command and control unit for coalition forces monitoring the no-fly zone. The mission was dubbed Operation Southern Watch. The first Southern Watch sortie was flown Aug. 27, 1992 - less than 24 hours after the announcement. By early 2001 pilots had entered the southern "no-fly" zone in Iraq 153,000 times. Between February 2000 and February 2001 allied pilots entered the zone 10,000 times. The mission continues until the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
August 28, 1992: The U.S. government mounts two huge relief operations, rushing food and drinking water to hurricane-ravaged Florida while U.S. cargo planes land in Somalia with tons of food for African famine victims.
October 9, 1992: To protect the US food airlift, the first American forces arrive in Somalia.
October 15, 1992: Statement to the press by the President of the Security Council concerning a high-level statement made in Iraq which appeared to constitute a threat to the security of United Nations inspectors, expressing the Council’s concern for the safety of the inspectors and expressing the wish that Iraq cooperate fully with them (S/5484 - IK125).
November 1992: US Presidential elections - Democrat Bill Clinton defeats incumbent Republican George Bush.
November 23, 1992: Statement by the President of the Security Council concerning general and specific obligations of Iraq, including those in the weapons areas, under the various Security Council resolutions (S/24836).
November 24, 1992: Statement by the President of the Security Council concerning statements by the Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq and regretting threats, allegations and attacks made by him regarding the various United Nations operations in Iraq (S/24839).
December 3, 1992: The U.N. Security Council unanimously approves a U.S.-led military mission to help starving Somalia.
December 4, 1992: President Bush orders American troops to lead a mercy mission to Somalia, threatening military action against warlords and gangs who were blocking food for starving millions.
December 8, 1992: Americans see live television coverage of U.S. troops landing on the beaches of Somalia as Operation Restore Hope begins (because of the time difference, it was early December ninth in Somalia). The US Operations Restore Hope, Continue Hope and others will ultimately end on March 3, 1995. They cost $1.7 billion and left 43 US dead and 153 wounded.
December 27, 1992: A U.S. Air Force F-16 on patrol in the Southern Watch no-fly zone , encounters a MiG-25 Foxbat. When the MiG pilot locked his air-to-air radar on the F-16, the American pilot destroyed the Foxbat with an air-to-air missile. Shortly after the shoot down, Saddam Hussein positions surface-to-air missiles in Southern Iraq below the 32nd parallel. Since these missiles threaten pilots flying Southern Watch missions, the coalition orders Hussein to move them above the 32nd parallel. He ignores the ultimatum, even after warnings from the U.N.
December 29, 1992: A bomb explodes in a hotel in Aden, Yemen, where US troops had been staying while en route to the humanitarian mission in Somalia. The bomb kills two Austrian tourists; the U.S. soldiers had already left. Two Yemeni Muslim militants, trained in Afghanistan and injured in the blast, are later arrested. US intelligence agencies allege that this was the first terrorist attack involving Osama bin Laden and his associates.
1993: Inspections are again held up when Iraq attempts to deny UNSCOM and the IAEA the use of their own aircraft in Iraq. The United States, France, and Britain launched several air and cruise-missile strikes against Iraq in response to provocations. In late 1993 Iraq accepts resolution 715. Meanwhile, Muhammad Atef, a top Osama bin Laden lieutenant, and 6 other al Qaeda operatives, set up training camps in Somalia to help Somali tribes oppose the UN peacekeeping operations.
January 6, 1993: Four U.N. allies, the United States, Russia, France and the United Kingdom, agree to work together in enforcing UNSCR 688. They issue a joint ultimatum to Iraq, demanding that Baghdad withdraw all surface-to-air missiles south of the 32d parallel.
January 7, 1993: Despite defiant rhetoric, the Iraqis begin removing some missiles from the southern no-fly zone.
January 8, 1993: Statement by the President of the Security Council, noting that Iraq's action in prohibiting the use of UNSCOM aircraft is an "unacceptable and material breach" of resolution 687 and warns Iraq of "serious consequences", were it to continue (S/25081).
January 10, 1993: Some 200 Iraqis force their way into ammunition bunkers located at the former naval base at Um Qasr and remove weapons and armaments slated for destruction.
January 11, 1993: Statement by the President of the Security Council reiterating the Statement of 8 January 1993 regarding Iraq’s prohibition on the use of UNSCOM aircraft, and again warning of serious consequences that would flow from continuing defiance (S/25091).
January 13, 1993: With Iraqi missile sites still operational south of the 32d parallel, and Iraqi troops making repeated forays across the newly demarcated border with Kuwait, President Bush orders punitive strikes against 32 Iraqi missile sites and air defense command centers.
January 15, 1993: Iraqi AAA fired on a pair of Provide Comfort F-111Fs in two separate incidents. Neither aircraft was hit; neither returned fire.
January 17, 1993: Iraqi AAA fired on two Provide Comfort F-16s. Neither plane was hit and neither returned fire. About an hour later, an F-4G attacked an air defense site that was targeting French reconnaissance planes. An hour and a half after that, a Provide Comfort F-16 shot down an Iraqi MiG over northern Iraq. In the south, US warships fire 45 cruise missiles against the Zarfaraniyah nuclear fabrication facility near Baghdad in response to Iraq's refusal to cooperate with UN inspectors. Eight buildings at the facility, located just outside Baghdad, are hit. One missile, apparently struck by Iraqi anti-aircraft fire, crashes into the Al Rasheed Hotel, killing two civilians.
President elect Clinton issues a statement: "Saddam Hussein's continuing provocation has been met by appropriate and forceful response. I fully support President Bush's actions. Saddam Hussein should be very clear in understanding that the current and the next administration are in complete agreement on the necessity of his fully complying with all relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions."
January 18, 1993: Provide Comfort F-4Gs attack surface-to-air missile sites in northern Iraq after being fired on, and F-16s drop cluster bombs on Bashiqah airfield after being attacked by AAA fire. In the south, JTF Southern Watch sends 75 US, British, and French aircraft to attack Iraqi missile sites south of the 32d parallel.
January 19, 1993: In two separate incidents, Provide Comfort aircraft clash with Iraqi air defenses. An F-4G fires a missile at a SAM radar site east of Mosul after the radar "locked onto" the Weasel. About three hours later, two F-16s drop cluster bombs on a AAA site after being fired at. Iraq informs UNSCOM that it will be able to resume its flights (S/225172).
January 20, 1993: William J. Clinton becomes President of the United States.
January 21, 1993: A F-16 and an F-4G escorting a French Mirage reconnaissance plane over northern Iraq attack an Iraqi missile battery after the site's search radar began tracking them.
January 22, 1993: An F-4G fires two missiles at a SAM site in northern Iraq.
January 26, 1993: A Voice of America broadcast makes clear that a new US administration will continue the Iraq policy:
President Clinton stressed that United States policy on Iraq will not change. "It is the American policy," he said, "and that is what we are going to stay with."February 3, 1993: Iraqi gunners fire at Provide Comfort aircraft on routine patrol over northern Iraq.
Secretary of State Warren Christopher also stressed the continuity of U.S. policy toward Iraq. "The United States intends to protect our pilots in the 'no-fly' zone," he said. "The Iraqis know perfectly well what it takes to comply with the U.N. resolutions and with the establishment of the 'no-fly' zones." Secretary Christopher said the U.S. attack on the missile site shows the determination with which the Clinton administration will pursue its policy toward Iraq.
February 26, 1993: World Trade Center bombing. Later (Feb/March 1995) Ramzi Yousef, "mastermind" of the attack, is captured in Pakistan and extradited to the United States. A search of his former residences leads investigators to believe he is financially linked to Osama bin Laden. Also, he had stayed at a bin Laden financed guest house while in Pakistan. Bin Laden himself would neither confirm nor deny a connection when asked in a 1998 interview, stating only that he did not know Yousef prior to the event.
April 9, 1993: Iraqi AAA sites fire on Provide Comfort aircraft near the Saddam Dam in northern Iraq.
April 18, 1993: An Iraqi radar site illuminates two Provide Comfort Wild Weasels flying north of the 36th parallel. The site was south of the parallel. One of the Weasels, an F-4G, fires an AGM-88 at the tracking radar and destroys it.
June - July 1993: Iraq refuses to allow UNSCOM to install remote-controlled monitoring cameras at two missile engine test stands.
June 18, 1993: Statement by the President of the Council, expressing deep concern over Iraq’s de facto refusal to accept UNSCOM installation of monitoring devices and warning Iraq of the serious consequences of material breaches of resolution 687 (1991) (S/25970). Subsequently, Iraq agrees to the installation of the monitoring cameras.
June 26, 1993: Retaliating for Iraqi complicity in an attempt to assassinate former President Bush, the US fired 23 cruise missiles at the headquarters of the Iraqi secret police in Baghdad.
June 29, 1993: A Southern Watch F-4G fires an anti-radar missile at a AAA site after the Iraqis illuminated it and another F-4G patrolling the southern no-fly zone.
July 29, 1993: In separate incidents, two US Navy EA-6Bs, part of Joint Task Force Southwest Asia, fired anti-radar missiles at Iraqi SAM sites after being illuminated by the sites' surveillance radars.
August 19, 1993: Two Provide Comfort F-16s report possible SA-3 launches west of Mosul and respond with cluster bombs. Two F-15s dropped four laser-guided bombs on the site an hour later.
September 16, 1993: Tripartite report by the Executive Chairman, the leader of the IAEA Action Team and the Director of the Iraqi Military Industrialization Corporation on measures to implement the plan for ongoing monitoring and verification (S/26451).
October 3, 1993: Somalia - "Blackhawk Down" - the most well known of several incidents resulting in loss of life in the humanitarian mission. Casualties and graphic images of Mogadishu residents desecrating the body of an American soldier would ultimately lead to withdrawal of US forces. Only years later would the role of Osama bin Laden's organization in Somalia become known.
October 12, 1993: Second tripartite report on steps to resolve outstanding issues and to implement ongoing monitoring and verification (S/26571).
November 26, 1993: Iraq accepts resolution 715 (1991) and the plans for ongoing monitoring and verification.
December 21, 1993: Iraqi troops fire on a patrol from CTF Provide Comfort's Military Coordination Center near Faydah in northern Iraq. The patrol was within the security zone established 22 May 1991; the Iraqis were over a mile away and outside the security zone. Baghdad denies Western reports of the incident as "fabricated and baseless."
1994: UNSCOM completes the destruction of Iraq's known chemical weapons and production equipment. IAEA teams largely complete their mandate to neutralize Iraq's nuclear program, including the destruction of facilities Iraq had not even declared to inspectors. In Operation Southern Watch the first nine months of 1994 pass without incident. Due to this relative calm Joint Task Force - South West Asia (JTF-SWA) begins a force drawdown with the redeployment of fighter aircraft and other USCENTAF assets to the US from Saudi Arabia.
January 1994: Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria grant overflight rights for 11 USAFE F-16s deploying from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, to Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, shaving 2 hours off of the normal flight time. The flight marks the first time US Air Force fighters had flown over these countries on an operational mission since World War II.
February 10, 1994: Joint statement dated 5 February 1994, by the Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq and the Executive Chairman of the Special Commission regarding significant progress made since July 1993 in both the political and technical areas, and expressing readiness to expedite the process establishing ongoing monitoring and verification (S/1994/151).
March 25, 1994: American troops complete their withdrawal from Somalia following a largely unsuccessful fifteen-month mission. 20,000 U.N. troops are left behind to keep the peace and facilitate "nation building." They too would withdraw in March 1995.
April 14, 1994: A pair of UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters are shot down by 2 US Air Force F-15's flying out of Incirlik, Turkey. The F-15s misidentified the Black Hawks as Iraqi Hinds violating the "no fly" zone. All 6 crew members aboard the helicopters are killed, along with 20 passengers, including UN observers in the Provide Comfort Zone and military officers from Britain, France and Turkey.
April 29, 1994: Joint Statement issued by the Chairman of the Special Commission, the Head of the IAEA Action Team and the Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq regarding progress made, in particular in regard to the establishment of the ongoing monitoring and verification, and recording Iraq’s assurances that it would respect the rights and privileges of the Commission and the IAEA and the Commission’s and the IAEA’s commitment to exercise their rights and privileges in a manner respecting Iraq’s legitimate concerns regarding sovereignty, independence, security and dignity (S/1994/520)
May 1994 Rivalry between Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) & Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), coalition partners for 5 years, breaks out into open conflict in Northern Iraq. Fighting continues until September and intermittently thereafter.
June 1994: UNSCOM completes the destruction of large quantities of chemical warfare agents and precursors and their production equipment.
September/October 1994: Saddam Hussein, upset about continued U.N. sanctions, sets a deadline of 10 October 1994 for the implementation of paragraph 22 of resolution 687 and threatens to stop cooperation with UNSCOM. Iraq moves a significant number of armored vehicles and mechanized infantry troops to Southern Iraq and to the Kuwaiti border. The United States deploys a carrier group, warplanes and 54,000 troops to the Persian Gulf region (Operation VIGILANT WARRIOR).
October 8, 1994: Statement by the President of the Security Council, underlining the complete unacceptability of Iraqi statements threatening to withdraw cooperation with UNSCOM and grave concern over reports regarding the deployment of troops in Iraq in the direction of Kuwait (S/PRST/1994/58).
October 15, 1994: Security Council resolution 949 demands that Iraq "cooperate fully" with UNSCOM and that it withdraw all military units deployed to southern Iraq to their original positions. The resolution prohibits Iraq from using its forces to threaten neighboring countries or U.N. operations in Iraq, and from deploying units south of the 32nd parallel or from otherwise enhancing its military capabilities in Southern Iraq.
October 15, 1994: Letter from the Representatives of Iraq and of the Russian Federation, transmitting a Joint Communique containing Iraq’s announcement that it had withdrawn its troops to rearguard positions (S/1994/1173).
March 1995: Iraq provides the second Full, Final and Complete Disclosures of its prohibited biological and chemical weapons programs.
March 2, 1995: The last U.N. peacekeepers are evacuated from Somalia.
April 14, 1995: The UN Security Council passes Resolution 986, which allows Iraq to buy food and medicine with money raised from the sale of its oil. Iraq will eventually accept the resolution - over one year later.
July 1, 1995: As a result of UNSCOM's investigations and in the light of irrefutable evidence, Iraq admits for the first time the existence of an offensive biological weapons program but denies weaponization.
July 1995: Iraq threatens to end all cooperation with UNSCOM and the IAEA if there is no progress towards the lifting of sanctions and the oil embargo by 31 August 1995.
August 1995: Iraq provides the third Full, Final and Complete Disclosure for its prohibited biological weapons program.
August 8, 1995: General Hussein Kamel, Minister of Industry and Minerals and former Director of Iraq's Military Industrialization Corporation, with responsibility for all of Iraq's weapons programmes, defects from Iraq to Jordan. Iraq claims that Hussein Kamel had hidden from UNSCOM and the IAEA important information on the prohibited weapons programs. Iraq withdraws its third biological Full, Final and Complete Disclosure and admits a far more extensive biological warfare program than previously admitted, including weaponization. Iraq also admits having achieved greater progress in its efforts to indigenously produce long-range missiles than had previously been declared. Iraq provides UNSCOM and the IAEA with large amounts of documentation, hidden on a chicken farm ostensibly by Hussein Kamel, related to its prohibited weapons programs which subsequently leads to further disclosures by Iraq concerning the production of the nerve agent VX and Iraq's development of a nuclear weapon. Iraq also informs UNSCOM that the deadline to halt its cooperation is withdrawn.
Kamil is Saddam Hussein's son-in-law; he fled Iraq with his wife, another of Saddam's daughters, and her husband - Saddam Kamil, brother of Hussein Kamil. Months later the Kamil brothers would return to Iraq and be shot dead. The most commonly reported story is that Saddam tricked them into returning by assuring them all was forgiven, but a former employee of the Defense Inteligence Agency wrote in response to a PBS broadcast of the story:
In the discussion of Hussein Kamil, it was stated that he provided important intelligence information on the Iraqi chemical and biological weapons programs. Actually, he provided us with very little information - he was demanding too much money for what he was willing to provide. Assuming that he was telling us everything, the Iraqi government decided to release over 10,000 documents on these programs to the United Nations Special Commission, detailing volumes not only on the chemical and biological programs, but their ballistic missile systems as well.August 20, 1995: Iraq gives UNSCOM 680,000 pages of printed documents, computer disks, videotapes, microfilm and microfiche relating to its banned weapons programs.
As far as the return to Iraq, Hussein Kamil and his brother Sadddam Kamil had no illusions about their fate. The message from Saddam Hussein was not that all was to be forgiven - this was merely a public relations ploy. They were told that unless they returned - with their wives (Saddam's daughters) - their entire extended families would be killed. Obviously, the two brothers believed that Saddam would do just that, and returned knowing full well what awaited them.
As you said in the program, the daughters were separated at the border by Saddam's oldest son. The two brothers were killed in a firefight with the Special Security Organization - not members of their family as reported by the Iraqi press. Their bodies were dragged through the streets of Baghdad as a warning to those who would defy Saddam.
October 15, 1995: Referendum in Iraq - Saddam Hussein wins and will remain president for another 7 years.
November 1995: Iraq provides second Full, Final and Complete Disclosure of its prohibited missile program.
November-December 1995: UNSCOM: The Government of Jordan intercepts a large shipment of high-grade missile components destined for Iraq. Iraq denies that it had sought to purchase these components, although it acknowledged that some of them were in Iraq. UNSCOM conducts an investigation, which confirms that Iraqi authorities and missile facilities have been involved in the acquisition of sophisticated guidance and control components for proscribed missiles. UNSCOM retrieves additional similar missile components from the Tigris river, which had been allegedly disposed of there by Iraqis involved in the covert acquisition. (More: Washington Post report October 1998)
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists Nov/Dec 1998:
Acting on an intelligence tip, on November 10, 1995 the Jordanian government intercepted a shipment of 240 Russian missile-guidance gyroscopes and accelerometers bound for Iraq. The next month, between December 16 and 30, a team of Iraqi scuba divers were directed by UNSCOM to dredge the Tigris River near Baghdad. They pulled out more than 200 additional missile instruments and components. These parts, many bearing clearly identifiable serial numbers in Cyrillic script, included gas pressure regulators, accelerometers, GIMBAL position indicators, and gyroscopes. (1) These items, like those recovered earlier in Jordan, had come from dismantled Russian submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SS-N-18s) designed to deliver nuclear warheads to targets more than 4,000 miles away.UN inspector Scott Ritter is involved in this event. Some accounts credit Israeli intelligence with providing the initial tip. Note the date - 3 years later - of the news accounts of the investigations. By that time (November 1998) the situation in Iraq had deteriorated to the point that military action seemed imminent.
November 13, 1995: The Islamic Movement of Change plants a bomb in a Riyadh military compound that kills one U.S. citizen, several foreign national employees of the U.S. Government, and more than 40 others.
Mar 1996: UNSCOM teams are denied immediate access to five sites designated for inspection. The teams enter the sites after delays of up to 17 hours.
March 19, 1996: Statement by the President of the Security Council expressing the Council’s concern at Iraq's denial of access, which it terms a clear violation of Iraq's obligations under relevant resolutions. The Council also demands that Iraq allow UNSCOM teams immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access to all sites designated for inspection (S/PRST/1996/11).
March 27, 1996: Security Council resolution 1051 approves the export/import monitoring mechanism for Iraq and demands that Iraq meet unconditionally all its obligations under the mechanism and cooperate fully with the Special Commission and the Director-General of the IAEA.
May 1996: Under pressure from the United States and Saudi Arabia, the Sudanese expel Osama bin Laden from the country. Bin Laden moves with his 10 children and three wives (he is rumored to have since added a fourth) to Afghanistan.
"Mr. bin Laden used to live in Sudan. He was expelled from Saudi Arabia in 1991, then he went to Sudan. And we'd been hearing that the Sudanese wanted America to start meeting with them again. They released him. At the time, 1996, he had committed no crime against America so I did not bring him here because we had no basis on which to hold him, though we knew he wanted to commit crimes against America."
-- Bill Clinton explains to a Long Island, N.Y., business group why he turned down Sudan's offer to extradite Osama Bin Laden to America in 1996.
May 1, 1996: Iraq accepts UN Security Council Resolution 986, passed over a year earlier in April 1995. The resolution allows Iraq to buy food and medicine with money raised from the sale of its oil. Iraq's acceptance of the resolution signals the beginning of the Oil-for-Food program, allowing Iraq to export $2 billion in oil/quarter to obtain humanitarian items.
May 1996: Iraq's main facility for the production of biological weapons, Al-Hakam, is destroyed through explosive demolition supervised by UNSCOM inspectors.
May 20, 1996: Iraq and UN Secretariat sign a Memorandum of Understanding, implementing UNSCR 986, the Oil for Food program.
June 1996: Clinton officials leak a story to several newspapers that the US plans to block Boutros-Ghali from winning a second five-year-term as Secretary of the United Nations, citing ineficiencies in the organization. Some observers speculate the rumors are an election year political ploy to appeal to a growing anti-UN sentiment in the US.
June 1996: Iraq denies UNSCOM teams access to sites under investigation for their involvement in the "concealment mechanism" for proscribed items.
June 12, 1996: Security Council resolution 1060 terms Iraq's actions a clear violation of the provisions of the Council's resolutions. It also demands that Iraq grant immediate and unrestricted access to all sites designated for inspection by UNSCOM.
June 13, 1996: Despite the adoption of resolution 1060 Iraq again denies access to another inspection team.
June 14, 1996: Statement by the President of the Security Council in which the Council condemns the failure of Iraq to comply with resolution 1060. The Council also asks that the Executive Chairman visit Baghdad with a view to securing access to all sites which the Commission designates for inspection (S/PRST/1996/28).
June 19-22, 1996: The Executive Chairman visits Baghdad. UNSCOM and Iraq agree on a Joint 1996 Statement and a Joint Program of Action (S/1996/463). The Chairman establishes modalities for inspection of so-called "sensitive sites", in order to take into account Iraq's legitimate security concerns.
June 22, 1996: Iraq provides the fourth Full, Final and Complete Disclosure of its prohibited biological weapons program.
June 1996: Iraq provides third Full, Final and Complete Disclosure of its prohibited chemical weapons program. (S/1997/774).
June 25, 1996: A fuel truck carrying a bomb explodes outside the U.S. military's Khobar Towers housing facility in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. The bomb was estimated at between 5,000 and 20,000 pounds. The blast completely destroyed the northern face of the building, blew out windows from surrounding buildings and was heard for miles. Nineteen U.S. military personnel are killed, 515 persons are wounded, including 240 U.S. personnel.
June 26, 1996: An coup attempt in Iraq fails when 120 coup plotters are arrested (most are executed). The Wall Street Journal, November 1997:
In 1995 Hussein Kamel, Saddam's son-in-law, defected to Jordan. His defection gave U.S. policy makers the idea of tapping a group of former Iraqi officials to plot a coup. The U.S. moved in 1996 to support a group under the command of Gen. Ayad Alawi, himself a defector from Saddam's regime. But the movement, known as the Wifaq (Arabic for "trust"), was plagued from the start by double agents. Indeed, Saddam penetrated it far more effectively than it penetrated his inner circle. In July 1996 Saddam's security apparatus swept across Iraq and arrested hundreds of the Wifaq's agents. Saddam's security services then used CIA communications equipment, captured from the defectors, to contact the CIA station chief in Amman, Jordan, to crow over their victory.July 1996: Iraq provides the third Full, Final and Complete Disclosure of its prohibited missile program.
UN Inspector Scott Ritter attempts to conduct surprise inspections on the Republican Guard facility at the airport, but is blocked by Iraqi officials. By the time UNSCOM inspectors are allowed into the facility a few days later, they find nothing.
July 28, 1996: 72-hour incursion by Iranian forces into Kurdish “safe haven”, focused on Mas’ud Barzani’s KDP camp at Koi Sanjaq. Iraq takes up a stronger stance against Iran’s ally, Jalal Talabani’s PUK. (See also May 1994 above.)
August 1996: "Operation Desert Focus" initiated. US air assets in Saudi Arabia are relocated from Dhahran and from Riyadh to the remote Prince Sultan Air Base during Operation Desert Focus. The move's purpose was force protection, and came in the wake of the 25 June 1996 terrorist bombing at Khobar Towers.
August, 1996: Al Quds Al Arabi, a London-based newspaper, publishes a Fatwa by Osama bin Laden. Its title "Declaration of War against the Americans Occupying the Land of the Two Holy Places" is a reference to Saudi Arabia, where US troops have been stationed since the Persian Gulf cease fire, enforcing the "no-fly zone" and other sanctions on Iraq.
...The latest and the greatest of these aggressions, incurred by the Muslims since the death of the Prophet (ALLAH'S BLESSING AND SALUTATIONS ON HIM) is the occupation of the land of the two Holy Places -the foundation of the house of Islam, the place of the revelation, the source of the message and the place of the noble Ka'ba, the Qiblah of all Muslims- by the armies of the American Crusaders and their allies...August 23, 1996: Statement by the President of the Security Council in which the Council strongly reaffirms its full support of the Commission in the conduct of its inspections and other tasks and expresses its grave concern at Iraq’s failure to comply fully with resolution 1060. The Council also states that Iraq’s failure to grant immediate unconditional and unrestricted access to sites and its attempts to impose conditions on the conduct of interviews with Iraqi officials constitute a gross violation of its obligations. The Council also reminds Iraq that only full compliance with its obligations would enable the Executive Chairman to present a report in accordance with section C of resolution 687 (1991) (S/PRST/1996/36).
From here, today we begin the work, talking and discussing the ways of correcting what had happened to the Islamic world in general, and the Land of the two Holy Places in particular...
The situation at the land of the two Holy places became like a huge volcano at the verge of eruption that would destroy the Kufr and the corruption and its' sources. The explosion at Riyadh and Al-Khobar is a warning of this volcanic eruption emerging as a result of the sever oppression, suffering, excessive iniquity, humiliation and poverty...
Clearly after Belief (Imaan) there is no more important duty than pushing the American enemy out of the holy land...
Under such circumstances, to push the enemy-the greatest Kufr- out of the country is a prime duty. No other duty after Belief is more important than the duty of had . Utmost effort should be made to prepare and instigate the Ummah against the enemy, the American-Israeli alliance- occupying the country of the two Holy Places and the route of the Apostle (Allah's Blessings and Salutations may be on him) to the Furthest Mosque (Al-Aqsa Mosque).
I would like here to alert my brothers, the Mujahideen, the sons of the nation, to protect this (oil) wealth and not to include it in the battle as it is a great Islamic wealth and a large economical power essential for the soon to be established Islamic state, by Allah's Permission and Grace...
It is out of date and no longer acceptable to claim that the presence of the crusaders is necessity and only a temporary measures to protect the land of the two Holy Places. Especially when the civil and the military infrastructures of Iraq were savagely destroyed showing the depth of the Zionist-Crusaders hatred to the Muslims and their children, and the rejection of the idea of replacing the crusaders forces by an Islamic force composed of the sons of the country and other Muslim people...
Today your brothers and sons, the sons of the two Holy Places, have started their Jihad in the cause of Allah, to expel the occupying enemy from of the country of the two Holy places...
Few days ago the news agencies had reported that the Defence Secretary of the Crusading Americans had said that "the explosion at Riyadh and Al-Khobar had taught him one lesson: that is not to withdraw when attacked by coward terrorists". We say to the Defence Secretary that his talk can induce a grieving mother to laughter! and shows the fears that had enshrined you all. Where was this false courage of yours when the explosion in Beirut took place on 1983 AD (1403 A.H). You were turned into scattered pits and pieces at that time; 241 mainly marines solders were killed. And where was this courage of yours when two explosions made you to leave Aden in lees than twenty four hours!
But your most disgraceful case was in Somalia; where- after vigorous propaganda about the power of the USA and its post cold war leadership of the new world order- you moved tens of thousands of international force, including twenty eight thousands American solders into Somalia. However, when tens of your solders were killed in minor battles and one American Pilot was dragged in the streets of Mogadishu you left the area carrying disappointment, humiliation, defeat and your dead with you. Clinton appeared in front of the whole world threatening and promising revenge , but these threats were merely a preparation for withdrawal. You have been disgraced by Allah and you withdrew; the extent of your impotence and weaknesses became very clear. It was a pleasure for the "heart" of every Muslim and a remedy to the "chests" of believing nations to see you defeated in the three Islamic cities of Beirut , Aden and Mogadishu...
I say to you William (Defence Secretary) that: These youths love death as you loves life.
...Those youths know that their rewards in fighting you, the USA, is double than their rewards in fighting some one else not from the people of the book. They have no intention except to enter paradise by killing you. An infidel, and enemy of God like you, cannot be in the same hell with his righteous executioner.
...Those youths are different from your soldiers. Your problem will be how to convince your troops to fight, while our problem will be how to restrain our youths to wait for their turn in fighting and in operations. These youths are commendation and praiseworthy.
August 31, 1996: Iraqi forces intervened in fighting between Kurdish factions, helping the Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) capture Irbil, the main Kurdish city in northern Iraq - inside the Kurdish haven established above the 36th parallel in 1991.
September - October, 1996: PUK offensive, with Iranian help, recaptures most areas lost in recent KDP offensive, except Irbil, by 21Oct.
September 3, 1996: Operation Desert Strike - retaliating for the Iraqi attack, the US launches 27 cruise missiles against targets in southern Iraq. Two Navy ships launched 14 Tomahawk missiles, while two B-52s fired 13 conventionally armed cruise missiles. The US also extends the Southern Watch no-fly zone to include all areas of Iraq south of the 33d parallel, one degree further north then the original line and just south of Baghdad.
September 4, 1996: A US F-16 patrolling the extended Southern Watch no-fly zone fired a HARM at an Iraqi SA-8 air defense radar after the radar locked onto it. Four Navy ships launched 17 more cruise missiles against targets in southern Iraq.
Following Operation DESERT STRIKE in 1996, Kuwait agrees to a nearly continuous presence of a US battalion task force in Kuwait. (Iris Gold ) These US Army INTRINSIC ACTION rotations and US Marine Corps EAGER MACE rotations conduct combined training with the Kuwaiti Land Forces and other coalition partners. In addition, Special Operations Forces conduct IRIS GOLD rotations to train and assist other Kuwaiti military units. The UN postpones implementation of UNSCR986 (Oil for Food).
September 11, 1996: Iraqi gunners fire an SA-6 missile at two US F-16s over northern Iraq but miss; a fighter and helicopter briefly violate the southern no-fly zone. The US deploys two B-52s to Diego Garcia and orders F-117A fighters to the Gulf.
September 15-18, 1996: Operation Pacific Haven/Quick Transit begins. Combined Task Force Provide Comfort and the 39th Wing at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, assist the US Department of State in Quick Transit I, the evacuation of 2,106 pro-US Kurds from northern Iraq to Guam.
October 7-13, 1996: Combined Task Force Provide Comfort and the 39th Wing at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, assist the US Department of State in Quick Transit III, the evacuation of 3,783 pro-US Kurds from northern Iraq.
October 15-22 1996: Combined Task Force Provide Comfort and the 39th Wing at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, assist the US Department of State in Quick Transit II, the evacuation of 604 pro-US Kurds from northern Iraq.
October 23, 1996: Ceasefire between PUK & KDP, brokered by US & UK.
November 2, 1996: -- A Southern Watch F-16CJ fires a HARM at an Iraqi mobile missile radar near the 32d parallel after the pilot receives radar warning signals.
November 1996: US presidential election, incumbent Democrat Bill Clinton re-elected over Republican challenger Bob Dole.
Nov 1996: Iraq blocks UNSCOM from removing remnants of missile engines for in-depth analysis outside Iraq.
November 19, 1996: President Clinton follows through on earlier statements; the US vetoes a second term for UN Secretary Gerneral Boutros Boutros-Ghali.
December 10, 1996: The oil-for-food program begins operations as oil flows from Iraq for the first time since 1990. The first shipments of food arrive in Iraq in March 1997. The first six months of activity under UNSCR986 (14Apr 95) would result in 1 billion dollars in revenue generated providing food and medicine for 18 million Iraqis living under Baghdad rule. Estimates of the death toll resulting from UN sanctions between 1990 and 1996 vary widely; some indicate that 750,000 people died through malnutrition and lack of medicines; and that the rate at this time was 10,000 a month.
However, the program would ultimately become tainted with accusations of corruption. In January 2004, an Iraqi newspaper will publish a list of hundreds of global companies, politicians, writers and UN officials alleging they profited from the illicit sale of Iraqi oil. An October 2005 report from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation:
It took 20 months for UN Security Council Resolution 986 to become the oil-for-food program that eased sanctions on Iraq enough to allow Saddam Hussein to sell some oil for food and medicine.December 30, 1996: Statement by the President of the Security Council in which the Council deplores the refusal of Iraq to allow the Special Commission to remove certain missile engines from Iraq for analysis, and demands that Iraq allow such removal. (S/PRST/1996/49).
The resolution passed in April 1995. The program got underway after the proper paperwork was signed by the government of Iraq and the UN in May of 1996.
In the beginning, Iraq was allowed to sell $2 billion worth of oil every six months. In 1998, the limit was raised to $5.26 billion every six months. In December 1999, the Security Council removed the ceiling on Iraqi oil exports under the program.
But fluctuating oil prices – especially in the early stages – meant Iraq had trouble producing as much oil as it was allowed to sell. Baghdad complained that years of sanctions after the 1991 Gulf War had devastated its ability to pump and ship oil.
Originally, two-thirds of the money raised from the program went to humanitarian programs in Iraq and 30 per cent went to the Compensation Commission in Geneva, which oversees payment for losses and damage as a result of the 1990 Iraqi invasion of Kuwait. The rest went to covering the costs of the program and of the weapons inspection program.
In 2000, the distribution was changed slightly: 72 per cent of revenue going to humanitarian programs, 25 per cent to the Compensation Commission and the rest to administration.
Before the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, an estimated 60 per cent of Iraq's population depended on the food, medicine and humanitarian supplies bought with money from Iraqi oil sales.
The program was suspended during the Iraq war. On Nov. 21, 2003, the program officially came to an end when the Security Council handed over authority for it to the Coalition Provisional Authority that ran Iraq until it handed over power to an interim government seven months later.
In January 2004, accusations of corruption in the $67-billion program surfaced. An Iraqi newspaper published a list of hundreds of global companies, politicians, writers and UN officials alleging they profited from the illicit sale of Iraqi oil. In response to these allegations, the UN, the U.S. Congress and the new Iraqi government all set up inquiries.
Saddam Hussein's government skimmed billions of dollars from the program by collecting kickbacks and illegal surcharges from oil buyers.
A U.S. Senate investigation has implicated politicians including British MP George Galloway and the former French interior minister Charles Pasqua. Both men are accused of kicking back lump sums to Saddam Hussein's government from the profits they made selling vouchers for discounted Iraqi oil to trading and refinery companies.
Both men deny these allegations. Galloway, an outspoken opponent of the war in Iraq, has accused the Republican-led Senate investigation of bias against the UN and of attempting to divert attention from the illegal invasion of Iraq. Pasqua said the Americans are punishing him for France's opposition to the war in Iraq.
At the UN, the scandal reached all the way to the top, to Secretary General Kofi Annan. His son, Kojo, was paid hundreds of thousands of dollars by a key contractor for the program, a Swiss company called Cotecna Inspection SA.
On March 29, 2005, investigators concluded there was not enough evidence to suggest that Kofi Annan knew of the contract bid by his son's employer. But it suggested that the secretary general did not do enough to determine the nature of his son's relationship with Cotecna.
In a subsequent report on Aug. 8, 2005, investigators mentioned the discovery of new e-mails that suggest Kofi Annan knew more about his son's role in the oil-for-food program than he had divulged earlier. The independent panel's final report blamed Annan for mismanagement but found no evidence of wrongdoing on his part. The report, released Sept. 7, 2005, does condemn "illicit, unethical and corrupt" behaviour during the oil-for-food program. Annan has called the findings "deeply embarrassing" for the UN.
December 27, 1996: France announces it will not take part in the successor operation to Provide Comfort (to be called Operation Northern Watch) on the grounds that the new operation did not include humanitarian aid to the Kurds.
December 31, 1996: Operation PROVIDE COMFORT officially ends. The US had flown more than 42,000 fixed-wing sorties during the operation, while the Combined Task Force flew nearly 62,000 fixed- and rotary-wing sorties.
January 1997: Kofi Annan of Ghana becomes Secretary General of the United Nations.
1997: The Additional Protocol is added to the global Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), giving IAEA inspectors more authority to investigate programs in member states. The protocol is in response to the realization that Iraq -- a NPT signatory -- had been able to move swiftly and covertly toward the construction of a nuclear weapon in the late 1980s under the treaty's previous safeguards. Inspections in the 1990s revealed that Iraq was much closer to building a nuclear weapon in the 1980s than had been suspected by IAEA officials.
January 1, 1997: The Turkish government approves a continuing air operation from Turkey, and Operation NORTHERN WATCH begins.
February 1997: Iraq allows UNSCOM to remove the missile engines (See Nov 1996).
March 20, 1997: The first shipment of supplies is cleared for import into Iraq via the Oil for Food agreement.
May 1, 1997: UK general election. The Labour Party led by Tony Blair defeats the incumbent Conservative Party. Tony Blair becomes Prime Minister.
June 1997: The UN Security Council votes to renew the oil-for-food program. The program would be renewed every six months for nearly seven years.
June 1997: Iraq interferes with UNSCOM's helicopter operations, threatening the safety of the aircraft and their crews.
June 18, 1997: Statement by the President of the Security Council expressing serious concern at Iraq’s actions endangering UNSCOM's helicopters, deploring such incidents and demanding that Iraq permit UNSCOM to carry out its air operations anywhere in Iraq without interference of any kind (S/PRST/1997/33).
June 21, 1997: Iraq again blocks UNSCOM's teams from entering certain sites, which have been designated by UNSCOM for inspection.
June 21, 1997: Security Council resolution 1115 condemns Iraq's actions and demands that Iraq allow UNSCOM's team immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access to any sites for inspection and officials for interviews by UNSCOM. The Council also calls for an additional report on Iraq's cooperation with the Commission and suspends the periodic sanctions reviews.
September 1997: Iraq provides fifth Full, Final and Complete Disclosure for its prohibited biological weapons program. An international panel of experts is convened in New York to discuss Iraq’s declaration. The panel unanimously finds Iraq’s declaration to be incomplete, inadequate and technically flawed.
September 13, 1997 One of UNSCOM's personnel is manhandled by an Iraqi officer on board one of the Commission's helicopters while the inspector was attempting to take photographs of the unauthorized movement of Iraqi vehicles inside a site declared by Iraq to be "sensitive", that was designated for inspection. Two days later, Iraq again failed to freeze movement inside another "sensitive site" designated for inspection.
September 17, 1997 While seeking access to a site for inspection declared by Iraq to be "sensitive", UNSCOM inspectors witness and videotape the movement of files, the burning of documents and dumping of ash-filled waste cans into a nearby river. The President of the Security Council makes a statement to the media, which, inter alia, deplores the incidents and urges Iraq to cooperate fully with UNSCOM.
September/October 1997: UNSCOM inspection teams are prevented from inspecting three sites designated for inspection, on the basis that the sites are "presidential sites", which Iraq claims are out of bounds to UNSCOM's inspectors.
October 1997: A protracted confrontation with Saddam Hussein begins after Iraq accuses U.S. members of the U.N. inspection teams of being spies and expels the majority of U.S. participants. The U.N. Security Council threatens renewed economic sanctions. The confrontation continues into November as Iraq expels the remaining six U.S. inspectors and the United Nations withdraws other inspectors in protest. Inspectors are readmitted after the United States and Great Britain again begin a military build-up in the Gulf. However, later in November, Iraq announces it will not allow inspectors access to sites designated as "palaces and official residences." U.N. officials protest, having long suspected that such sites were being used to conceal possible weapons of mass destruction.
October 13, 1997 UN Office of the Iraq Program (Oil for Food) established, Benon V. Sevan of Cyprus is appointed Executive Director. He would eventually become a central figure in the UN investigation into corruption in the program.
But Sevan came to world attention as investigations began into the Oil-for-Food program. Sevan reportedly accepted bribes from Saddam Hussein in the form of oil vouchers, and allowed Saddam to garner $11 billion for military and other uses which violated the UN sanctions against his regime, even as Sevan tried to persuade the United Nations Security Council to make concessions to the Iraqi regime.October 23, 1997: Security Council resolution 1134 (1997), demands that Iraq cooperate fully with the Special Commission, continues the suspension of the periodic sanctions reviews and foreshadows additional sanctions pending a further report on Iraq's cooperation with UNSCOM.
On 7 February 2005, United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, also implicated in the oil-for-food scandal, suspended Sevan and another UN official with pay ($1 per year, plus benefits including diplomatic immunity from prosecution) because of their roles in the fraud.
On 8 August 2005, a UN-appointed panel, led by Paul Volcker, published a report on its investigation into the scandal. In the report the panel concluded that Sevan had accepted bribes from the former Iraqi regime and recommended that his UN immunity be lifted, to allow for a criminal investigation. Sevan had resigned from the UN on 7 August 2005, just one day before the report was due to be published.
In October 2005 it was reported he had fled the US and returned to his native Cyprus. No treaty exists between the US and Cyprus that would enable Benon to be extradited for any potential trial.
October 1997: UNSCOM completes the destruction of additional, large quantities of chemical weapons related equipment and precursors chemicals. Iraq had previously denied that part of the equipment had been used for CW production. Only in May 1997, on the basis of UNSCOM's investigations, did Iraq admit that some of the equipment had indeed been used in the production of VX.
October 27, 1997: The Executive Chairman sends a letter to Deputy Prime Minister Tariq Aziz, suggesting the agenda for forthcoming meetings in Baghdad. The letter proposes that Iraq address important outstanding issues, including warheads, VX and the biological weapons area. It also mentions the need to review the "modalities for inspection of sensitive sites" to ensure that inspections are conducted in a credible manner.
October 29, 1997: The Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq, Mr. Tariq Aziz, sends a letter to the President of the Security Council, informing the Council of policy decisions taken by the Government of Iraq. The letter includes a decision not to deal with personnel of United States nationality working for UNSCOM, a demand that all personnel of United States nationality working with UNSCOM leave Iraq by a given deadline, and a request that UNSCOM withdraw its "cover" for the "spy plane" U-2, provided by the United States. The President of the UN Security Council issues a statement condemning Iraq's decision and terming it "unacceptable". The statement also demands that Iraq cooperate fully, without restrictions or conditions with UNSCOM, and warns of the serious consequences of Iraq's failure to comply immediately and fully with its obligations under relevant resolutions (S/PRST/1997/49).
November 12, 1997: Security Council resolution 1137 condemns the continued violation by Iraq of its obligations, including its unacceptable decision to seek to impose conditions on cooperation with UNSCOM. It also imposes a travel restriction on Iraqi officials who are responsible for or participated in the instances of non-compliance.
November 13, 1997: Iraq requires the personnel of United States nationality working for UNSCOM to leave Iraq immediately. The Executive Chairman decides the majority of the UNSCOM personnel should withdraw temporarily from Iraq. A skeleton staff remains in Baghdad to maintain UNSCOM's premises and equipment. The President of the Security Council issues a statement in which the Council condemns the unacceptable decision of Iraq in expelling personnel of UNSCOM of a specified nationality, demands Iraq to rescind its decisions of 29 October 1997 and demands that Iraq cooperate fully with UNSCOM (S/PRST/1997/51).
November 20, 1997: Following intensive diplomatic activity an agreement is reached between Iraq and the Russian Federation whereby Iraq accepts the return of the Commission (UNSCOM) with its full complement of staff to resume its work in Iraq. The Commission’s personnel, who had been temporarily withdrawn to Bahrain, return to Iraq on 21 November and resume their inspection activities the following day.
November 21, 1997: An Emergency Session of the Special Commission is held in New York in order to discuss and advise on ways to make the work more effective. The report of the Emergency Session is submitted to the Security Council (S/1997/922).
December 3, 1997: Statement by the President of the Security Council in which the Council endorses the conclusions and recommendations of the Emergency Session of the Commission. The Council also stresses that the effectiveness and speed with which UNSCOM might accomplish its responsibilities was determined by the degree to which Iraq cooperated in disclosing the full extent and disposition of its proscribed programs, and in granting UNSCOM unimpeded to all sites, records and individuals. The Council further welcomes the progress achieved by UNSCOM and the IAEA in the various disarmament areas (S/PRST/1997/54).
December 17, 1997: The Executive Chairman returns to New York from Iraq and reports, inter alia, to the Council that Iraq would not permit UNSCOM inspectors into a category of sites (Presidential and Sovereign) hitherto not identified to the Council or the Commission as being off-limits to inspection (S/1997/987).
December 22, 1997: The President of the Security Council issues a statement in which members of the Council call upon the Government of Iraq to cooperate fully with UNSCOM and stress that failure by Iraq to provide immediate, unconditional and unrestricted access to any site is unacceptable (S/PRST/1997/56).