Swiss to join U.N. sanctions

Published Aug. 8, 1990|Updated Oct. 17, 2005

Neutral Switzerland will take the unprecedented step of joining international economic sanctions against Iraq and occupied Kuwait, the government said Tuesday. Switzerland will follow the U.N. Security Council's lead and launch a trade embargo, stop the transfer of payments and freeze Kuwaiti and Iraqi assets here, a foreign ministry spokesman said. Switzerland, not a member of the United Nations, has until now declined to take part in economic sanctions against other countries.Emir: Embargo not enough

WASHINGTON _ The Emir of Kuwait, exiled in Saudi Arabia, said Tuesday he believes the economic embargo against Iraq will be insufficient to free his tiny, oil-rich kingdom. "I believe that in a matter like this, economic measures are not enough," Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmed Al-Sabah said in a telephone interview with ABC television. "Therefore it is essential to look for other measures." Asked whether military force will be necessary to oust Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's troops that overran Kuwait last week, the exiled leader said, "It is rather difficult to answer this particular question at this stage now."

PLO leader may lose support

CAIRO _ PLO leader Yasser Arafat has emerged as a strong defender of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, but the price of his stance may be the loss of support in Western capitals. The Iraqi invasion has, for the time being, knocked the Palestinian issue off the international agenda and eased pressure on Israel to start negotiations with Palestinians in the occupied territories. But delighted Israeli officials have also seized upon the Palestine Liberation Organization's support for Hussein as evidence that Arafat and his colleagues are not suitable negotiating partners.

MacDill officials quiet on plans

TAMPA _ Spokesmen for the U.S. Special Operations Command at MacDill Air Force Base and the Defense Department declined to comment on reports that U.S. troops are being sent to Saudi Arabia. "I have nothing for you on that report or the content of that report," said Lt. Col. Steve Roy at the Defense Department. "We will not normally discuss alert status." The only signs of mobilization at MacDill on Tuesday afternoon were camouflage-covered supplies lining a runway. Several Air Force personnel were packaging more supplies in a deployment warehouse that was surrounded by a number of trucks and jeeps painted in desert camouflage. Special Operations Command, which has its headquarters at MacDill, is an elite division coordinating the activities of the Navy Sea-Air-Land (SEAL) commandos, Army Green Berets and Rangers and the counterterrorist Delta Force.

Iraqis nervous about talks

ALEXANDRIA, Egypt _ Iraqi security men accompanying an official to talks with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak were so nervous that they brought their own food and inspected several rooms in the presidential palace. Some in plain clothes and all armed with automatic pistols, the security men accompanying Izzat Ibrahim, a deputy to Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, fanned out inside and outside Mubarak's Ras al-Tin palace. The Iraqis inspected several rooms, followed closely by Egyptian security, who refused to let them into the room where Mubarak met Ibrahim. The refused to eat any food offered by the Egyptians. One guard explained that Ibrahim had health problems and was on a special diet.

Customs takes load of Iraqi oil

PORT ARTHUR, Texas _ Customs officials seized a shipload of Iraqi crude oil Tuesday morning at Port Arthur because it violated the trade embargo, authorities said. The nearly 500,000 barrels, roughly 20-million gallons, of Iraqi crude on the Swedish-flagged vessel Thoraas were seized because the shipment was paid for Monday in violation of the U.S. embargo on Iraqi oil, said Donna De La Torre, a spokeswoman for the Customs southwest regional office in Houston. The embargo began at 5 a.m. Thursday after Iraq invaded Kuwait. The ship was detained, but not seized, De La Torre added, until Customs determines what to do with the oil aboard.

Guerrilla leader may be in Iraq

WASHINGTON _ The radical Palestinian guerrilla leader known as Abu Nidal may have returned to Iraq after a seven-year rift with the government of Saddam Hussein, according to U.S. administration sources. The sources said the reports of the return began to circulate about a month ago, well before the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait, but were as yet unconfirmed. Abu Nidal, whose real name is Sabri al-Banna, is charged by the United States with carrying out over 90 attacks on civilians since 1974 in 20 countries, killing or wounding some 900 people.

Foreigners arrive in Jordan

AMMAN, Jordan _ An Iraqi Airways jet carrying 78 foreigners and some Iraqis arrived here Tuesday, the first commercial flight allowed out of Iraq since it invaded Kuwait, a Japanese Embassy spokesman said. Most of the foreigners on the flight were Japanese tourists who were visiting Iraq, the diplomat said. No Americans were on the flight. The embassy spokesman said the plane was supposed to fly on to Vienna after refueling, but the Austrian government denied landing rights. Thousands of Westerners remain stranded in Kuwait and Iraq since Iraq invaded Kuwait on Thursday. Iraq's ambassador to Greece, Abdel Fatah Al Khereji, said Tuesday, "Any foreigners in Kuwait who wish to leave . . . can do so by land from Iraq through Turkey or Jordan."

Gulf travel advisory planned

WASHINGTON _ The State Department plans to advise Americans not to travel to eastern Saudi Arabia and adjacent nations on the Persian Gulf, an administration official said Tuesday. The notice will advise Americans working in the area that the government will pay for evacuation of dependents, said the official, who asked not to be identified. No official government personnel are being withdrawn. In addition to eastern Saudi Arabia, other nations affected by the notice are Bahrain, Qatar, Oman and the United Arab Emirates. Travel to Kuwait and Iraq has been cut off by Iraq's invasion of Kuwait.