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US Envoy Seeks Iraqi Debt Forgiveness in Mideast - 2004-01-19


The White House special envoy for Iraqi debt is traveling to the Middle East Monday for a new round of debt reduction talks.

James Baker will visit Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. During his four-day trip he will also confer with Iraqi officials about the country's estimated $120 billion debt burden.

The former secretary of state has already traveled to major creditor nations in Europe and Asia seeking forgiveness of the crushing debt.

His efforts led to debt reduction agreements with Russia, Germany and France, all of whom opposed the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

Japan agreed to cut billions of dollars in Iraqi debt and China said it would consider doing so.

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