LETTER : US embargo links Iran with Iraq

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From Ms Felicity Arbuthnot

Sir: Now Iran joins the list of countries to have a US-led embargo against it ("US allies alarmed at trade ban on Iran", 2 May). According to the French human rights organisation, Partage Avec Les Enfants Du Monde, in Haiti the number of children suffering from malnutrition rose from 27 per cent in 1990 to 60 per cent in 1994. In Cuba, half the children between ages six and 12 suffer anaemia, and in Iraq, childhood mortality rose by 400 per cent in the first two years of the embargo.

While the effect on Iran will not be as devastating unless other countries are pressurised into following suit - Japan already looks to have succumbed - the action will form a common grievance and closer ties between Iran and neighbouring Iraq.

Thus this "dual containment" policy, an idea devised by the National Security Council, will surely soon be perceived as a dual threat by the US, a vast, hostile power block in the Middle East to be targeted as a new cold war zone or, worse, a new Gulf war.

Yours sincerely,


London, E9

6 May