Skip to comments.THE TIMES: Galloway denies receiving £370,000 Iraq oil payments
Posted on 04/21/2003 9:31:18 PM PDT by The Hon. Galahad Threepwood
|THE Labour MP George Galloway issued strenuous denials last night after documents were found in Iraq alleging that he had received regular, large sums of money from the regime of Saddam Hussein.
Confidential papers found in Baghdad purported to show that Mr Galloway had been taking a cut of oil revenue meant for the people of Iraq under the United Nations oil-for-food programme.
The documents, which were found in the Iraqi Foreign Ministry, by a reporter from The Daily Telegraph apparently showed that Mr Galloway had communicated with Saddams regime via a senior Iraqi spy chief. The MP had asked an agent of the Mukhabarat secret service for an increase in the cut he was receiving of Iraqs exports. The authenticity of the documents has not been confirmed.
Mr Galloway, MP for Glasgow Kelvin, had always denied receiving any financial assistance from Baghdad. Confronted by the evidence of his links, the MP, who has vociferously opposed action against Saddam, claimed that the documents were the product of forgers.
He said it was preposterous to suggest that his campaigning in support of the regime was funded by the Iraqi dictator. He said of the document: Maybe it is the product of the same forgers who forged so many other things in this whole Iraq picture. Maybe The Daily Telegraph forged it.
He added: The truth is I have never met, to the best of my knowledge, any member of Iraqi Intelligence. I have never in my life seen a barrel of oil, bought or sold one.
Mr Galloway founded the Mariam Appeal in 1998 when he flew Mariam Hamza, a young Iraqi girl, to Glasgow for treatment in a childrens hospital. But the papers say that behind the scenes, Mr Galloway was conducting a liaison with Iraqi Intelligence.
Among the documents found was a memo from the chief of the Secret Service to Saddams office on January 3, 2000, which was marked confidential and personal. It apparently outlining talks between the MP and an Iraqi spy. The secret service chief wrote that Mr Galloway told the spy that he needed continuous financial support from Iraq. He obtained, through Mr Tariq Aziz three million barrels of oil every six months. According to the oil-for-food programme. His share would be only between 10 and 15 cents per barrel.
If the memo is accurate, Mr Galloways share would have amounted to £375,000 per year. The papers claim that Mr Galloway entered into partnership with a named Iraqi oil broker to sell the oil on an international market.
Downing Street refused last night to comment on Mr Galloways alleged receipt of Iraqi funds, and said that all issues concerning the conduct of MPs should be addressed to the Labour Party. A Labour spokesman said that no comment would be made on the allegations until later this morning.
Mr Galloway has already faced widespread calls from his Labour colleagues for him to be stripped of the Labour Whip. Unless he can prove that the latest revelations are a forgery, he now looks almost certain to face moves to expel him from the Labour Party.
Mr Galloway strenuously denied that the meeting referred to in the document took place. However he says he did spend one Christmas in Baghdad, possibly in 1999.
The documents were found in a heap of box files piled up on the floor in the office of Iraqis Foreign Minister, according to the reporter concerned. The file was marked Britain and the enclosed papers were all stamped with the Iraqi eagle.
The question to be put to him is has he ment members of the Iraqi government, whether or not they are part of Iraqi intelligence.
POSSIBLY in 1999?
I can remember where I spent Christmas in 1999, with no "possibly" entering into the question.
Well, this is looking more and more like they found the goods on Galloway.
If Gallows-bait "strenulously denied" it, it must be false.
Wonder how much he took and how many others there are?
"name of Mr Galloway or his wife should never be mentioned".
So, his Palestinian wife is in the mix. I'd bet with MariamAppeal's base being in Jordan, the secret accounts rest there.
... the sentence of the Court upon you is, that you be taken from this place to a lawful prison, and thence to a place of execution, and that you be there hanged by the neck until you are dead; and that your body be afterwards buried within the precincts of the prison in which you shall have been confined before your execution. And may the Lord have mercy upon your soul.
You seem to know a bit of history about this Galloway.
I did not, but was on the original thread. The intermediary between Galloway and the Iraqi government was a man from--ta da--Jordan.
The hairs on the back of my neck started to rise when I read that. A lot of political careers may be about to founder.
Jim McDermott, maybe?
Perhaps it's time to resurrect the old House Un-American Activities Committee.
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