Sanctions Affect Billions in Assets

From a Times Staff Writer

President Bush's executive order Thursday imposing economic sanctions against Iraq for its invasion of Kuwait affects billions of dollars in property and assets.

The order blocks the sale or transfer of Iraqi government assets in the United States and imposes a trade embargo on Iraq. At the same time, it freezes Kuwaiti property to prevent its takeover by Saddam Hussein's regime in Iraq.

"We call on all other states to undertake similar action," White House spokesman Roman Popadiuk said.

The order, effective immediately, was based on Bush's determination that "the policies and actions of the government of Iraq constitute an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States."

The order bans the import of nearly all Iraqi goods and services and bans all exports to Iraq of any U.S. goods. It also prohibits American firms from granting loans and credits as well.

The only exception are informational materials and humanitarian articles, such as emergency food, clothing, and medical supplies.

The President's order also bars Americans from purchasing Iraqi goods for export to any other country. And it prohibits travel to Iraq by all Americans except journalists.

The order will primarily affect U.S. purchases of Iraqi oil, which last year amounted to roughly $2.4 billion, and the sale of American agricultural products to Iraq, which totaled about $1.1 billion in 1989.

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