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S.Con.Res. 78 (105th): Saddam Hussein War Crime Prosecution bill


The text of the resolution below is as of Mar 3, 1998 (Reported by Senate Committee).


SCON 78 RS

Calendar No. 322

105th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. CON. RES. 78

Relating to the indictment and prosecution of Saddam Hussein for war crimes and other crimes against humanity.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 2, 1998

Mr. SPECTER submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

March 3, 1998

Reported by Mr. HELMS, without amendment


CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Relating to the indictment and prosecution of Saddam Hussein for war crimes and other crimes against humanity.

Whereas the International Military Tribunal at Nurenberg was convened to try individuals for crimes against international law committed during World War II;

Whereas the Nuremberg tribunal provision which held that ‘crimes against international law are committed by men, not by abstract entities, and only by punishing individuals who commit such crimes can the provisions of international law be enforced’ is as valid today as it was in 1946;

Whereas, on August 2, 1990, and without provocation, Iraq initiated a war of aggression against the sovereign state of Kuwait;

Whereas the Charter of the United Nations imposes on its members the obligations to ‘refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state’;

Whereas the leaders of the Government of Iraq, a country which is a member of the United Nations, did violate this provision of the United Nations Charter;

Whereas the Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Times of War (the Fourth Geneva Convention) imposes certain obligations upon a belligerent State, occupying another country by force of arms, in order to protect the civilian population of the occupied territory from some of the ravages of the conflict;

Whereas both Iraq and Kuwait are parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention;

Whereas the public testimony of witnesses and victims has indicated that Iraqi officials violated Article 27 of the Fourth Geneva Convention by their inhumane treatment and acts of violence against the Kuwaiti civilian population;

Whereas the public testimony of witnesses and victims has indicated that Iraqi officials violated Articles 31 and 32 of the Fourth Geneva Convention by subjecting Kuwaiti civilians to physical coercion, suffering and extermination in order to obtain information;

Whereas in violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention, from January 18, 1991, to February 25, 1991, Iraq did fire 39 missiles on Israel in 18 separate attacks with the intent of making it a party to war and with the intent of killing or injuring innocent civilians, killing 2 persons directly, killing 12 people indirectly (through heart attacks, improper use of gas masks, choking), and injuring more than 200 persons;

Whereas Article 146 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states that persons committing ‘grave breaches’ are to be apprehended and subjected to trial;

Whereas, on several occasions, the United Nations Security Council has found Iraq’s treatment of Kuwaiti civilians to be in violation of international law;

Whereas, in Resolution 665, adopted on August 25, 1990, the United Nations Security Council deplored ‘the loss of innocent life stemming from the Iraq invasion of Kuwait’;

Whereas, in Resolution 670, adopted by the United Nations Security Council on September 25, 1990, it condemned further ‘the treatment by Iraqi forces on Kuwait nationals and reaffirmed that the Fourth Geneva Convention applied to Kuwait’;

Whereas, in Resolution 674, the United Nations Security Council demanded that Iraq cease mistreating and oppressing Kuwaiti nationals in violation of the Convention and reminded Iraq that it would be liable for any damage or injury suffered by Kuwaiti nationals due to Iraq’s invasion and illegal occupation;

Whereas Iraq is a party to the Prisoners of War Convention and there is evidence and testimony that during the Persian Gulf War, Iraq violated articles of the Convention by its physical and psychological abuse of military and civilian POW’s including members of the international press;

Whereas Iraq has committed deliberate and calculated crimes of environmental terrorism, inflicting grave risk to the health and well-being of innocent civilians in the region by its willful ignition of 732 Kuwaiti oil wells in January and February, 1991;

Whereas President Clinton found ‘compelling evidence’ that the Iraqi Intelligence Service directed and pursued an operation to assassinate former President George Bush in April 1993 when he visited Kuwait;

Whereas Saddam Hussein and other Iraqi officials have systematically attempted to destroy the Kurdish population in Iraq through the use of chemical weapons against civilian Kurds, campaigns in 1987-88 which resulted in the disappearance of more than 182,000 persons and the destruction of more than 4,000 villages, the placement of more than 10 million landmines in Iraqi Kurdistan, and ethnic cleansing in the city of Kirkuk;

Whereas the Republic of Iraq is a signatory to international agreements including the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, and the POW Convention, and is obligated to comply with these international agreements;

Whereas section 8 of Resolution 687 of the United Nations Security Council, adopted on April 3, 1991, requires Iraq to ‘unconditionally accept the destruction, removal, or rendering harmless, under international supervision of all chemical and biological weapons and all stocks of agents and all related subsystems and components and all research, development, support, and manufacturing facilities’;

Whereas Saddam Hussein and the Republic of Iraq have persistently and flagrantly violated the terms of Resolution 687 with respect to elimination of weapons of mass destruction and inspections by international supervisors;

Whereas there is good reason to believe that Iraq continues to have stockpiles of chemical and biological munitions, missiles capable of transporting such agents, and the capacity to produce such weapons of mass destruction, putting the international community at risk;

Whereas, on February 22, 1993, the United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 808 establishing an international tribunal to try individuals accused of violations of international law in the former Yugoslavia;

Whereas, on November 8, 1994, the United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 955 establishing an international tribunal to try individuals accused of the commission of violations of international law in Rwanda;

Whereas more than 70 individuals have faced indictments handed down by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in the Hague for war crimes and crimes against humanity in the former Yugoslavia, leading in the first trial to the sentencing of a Serb jailer to 20 years in prison;

Whereas the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda has indicted 31 individuals, with three trials occurring at present and 27 individuals in custody;

Whereas the United States has to date spent more than $24 million for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and more than $20 million for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda;

Whereas officials such as former President George Bush, Vice President Al Gore, General Norman Schwarzkopf and others have labeled Saddam Hussein a war criminal and called for his indictment; and

Whereas a failure to try and punish leaders and other persons for crimes against international law establishes a dangerous precedent and negatively impacts the value of deterrence to future illegal acts: Now, therefore, be it

    Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), That the President should--

      (1) call for the creation of a commission under the auspices of the United Nations to establish an international record of the criminal culpability of Saddam Hussein and other Iraqi officials;

      (2) call for the United Nations to form an international criminal tribunal for the purpose of indicting, prosecuting, and imprisoning Saddam Hussein and other Iraqi officials who are responsible for crimes against humanity, genocide, and other violations of international law; and

      (3) upon the creation of such an international criminal tribunal, seek the reprogramming of necessary funds to support the efforts of the tribunal, including the gathering of evidence necessary to indict, prosecute and imprison Saddam Hussein and other Iraqi officials.

Calendar No. 322

105th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. CON. RES. 78

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Relating to the indictment and prosecution of Saddam Hussein for war crimes and other crimes against humanity.


March 3, 1998

Reported without amendment