Iraq urges the United Nations to intervene and end interceptions of its civilian vessels by the United States Navy deployed in the Gulf, Baghdad's permanent envoy to the UN wrote in a letter to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan reported by the Iraqi press Saturday.
The message cited several cases in June of interceptions of Iraqi ships carrying civilian cargo in Iraq's territorial waters and beyond. The ships in question were stopped by US patrol ships and also Australian warships. In each case, crew members and cargo were thoroughly inspected.
The document emphasizes that the US and its allies bear "the full responsibility for their piratical and provocative acts" which it says violate international law and the UN Charter. Iraq reserves the right to "seek compensation" for these actions and calls on the UN Secretary General to step in.