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Iraq: closing a chapter

01 July 2013
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With the decision adopted by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) last Thursday, Iraq has turned an important page in its troubled national history. After 23 years of punitive measures put in place under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, the country has now cleared the way to end its pariah status in the international system. This has been achieved by reaching an understanding with Kuwait on how to settle all the outstanding issues which still placed it under the coercive chapter of the UN Charter. Since many of the most contentious issues have now been dealt with, the United Nations Security Council decided on 29 June to address the remaining question of missing Kuwaiti persons and property under Chapter VI, i.e. by peaceful means. The UNSC decision therefore closes, both literally and figuratively, a painful chapter in Iraq’s history.