December 30, 2007

A curious addition to the U.N. Oil For Food swindle

We know about Iraq buying French and Russian munitions after the weapons embargo was placed. We know about the top-level corruption at the United Nations (Kofi Annan and his son Kojo) concerning the Oil for Food program. Now, news is coming out about a British Pharmaceutical company and another Pharmaceutical company that is a joint venture between Sweden and England. From the UK The Press Association:
Drug firms face Iraq bribes probe
Pharmaceutical companies GlaxoSmithKline and AstraZeneca have been asked to hand over documents to the Serious Fraud Office as part of its investigation into bribes allegedly paid to Saddam Hussein's deposed Iraqi regime.

The SFO is investigating possible breaches of the oil-for-food sanctions in place against the Middle Eastern country.

The investigation was triggered by a damning United Nations report which listed more than 2,200 companies worldwide that may have been linked to bribery or "kickbacks" to Iraq.

GSK and AstraZeneca have denied any wrongdoing and said they were co-operating fully with the SFO.

The programme was supposed to allow the Iraqi government to sell limited amounts of oil to buy foreign food and medicines.

But Paul Volcker, former chairman of the US Federal Reserve, said in his 2005 report for the UN that it had become corrupt as Saddam Hussein's regime demanded payments from foreign companies in return for lucrative contracts.

The investigation, which could take years and is expected to cost around �22 million, has been predicted to become one of the biggest undertaken by the SFO.
heh... One by one, the coalition is mopping up the 'insurgents' and on the home front, one by one, people are turning over the rocks and weeding out the corruption they find there. The Oil for Food program is long over but it's repercussions are still going strong. Obligatory links: GlaxoSmithKline (wiki) and AstraZeneca (wiki) Posted by DaveH at December 30, 2007 12:53 PM