25 April 2003

Security Council Extends "Oil-for-Food" Programme Until 3 June

Resolution 1476 Adopted Unanimously

NEW YORK, 24 April (UN Headquarters) -- The Security Council this afternoon extended the "oil-for-food" programme for Iraq, as adjusted by its resolution 1472 (2003) and which was to expire on 12 May, until 3 June.

It did so by unanimously adopting resolution 1476 (2003), through which the Council decided that the provisions contained in paragraph 4 of resolution 1472 (2003) would remain in force until that date and might be subject to further renewal.

Under paragraph 4 of resolution 1472 (2003), the Council gave Secretary-General Kofi Annan more authority to administer the programme by authorizing him, among other things, to establish alternative locations, both inside and outside Iraq, for the delivery of humanitarian supplies and equipment; to proceed with approved contracts after a review to determine the relative priorities of the need for adequate medicine, health supplies, foodstuffs and other materials; to negotiate and agree on necessary adjustments in approved contracts; and to negotiate and execute new contracts for essential medical items.

Other steps called for include: transferring unencumbered funds between accounts created pursuant to the programme on an exceptional and reimbursable basis to ensure the delivery of essential humanitarian supplies; and using funds deposited in the accounts to compensate suppliers and shippers for agreed additional shipping, transportation and storage costs incurred as a result of diverting and delaying shipments

The programme, created in 1995 to ease the impact of the sanctions imposed following Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in August 1990, permitted Iraq to use part of its oil revenues for food and medicine and has been the only sustenance for some 60 per cent of Iraq's people. It was suspended on 17 March when the Secretary-General withdrew United Nations personnel from Iraq, just prior to the start of military action.

The Council has continued the programme in 180-day periods called "phases". The current oil-exporting period is phase XIII, authorized by Council resolution 1447 (2002), which came into effect on 5 December 2002 and runs through 3 June 2003.

The meeting started at 12:12 p.m. and adjourned at 12:15 p.m.


The full text of resolution 1476 (2003) reads, as follows:

"The Security Council,

"Recalling its previous relevant resolutions, and in particular resolutions 661 (1990) of 6 August 1990, 986 (1995) of 14 April 1995, 1409 (2002) of 14 May 2002, 1454 (2002) of 30 December 2002, and 1472 (2003) of 28 March 2003, as they provide humanitarian relief to the people of Iraq,

"Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations,

"1. Decides that the provisions contained in paragraph 4 of resolution 1472 (2003) shall remain in force until 3 June 2003 and may be subject to further renewal by the Council;

"2. Decides to remain seized of the matter."

* *** *