CLOSURE OF THE UNITED NATIONS COMPENSATION COMMISSION
Today, under the Presidency of Ireland, the Governing Council of the United Nations Compensation Commission held its eighty-ninth and final session.
The Commission was created in 1991 as a subsidiary organ of the Security Council with a mandate to process claims and pay compensation for losses and damage suffered as a direct result of Iraq’s invasion and occupation of Kuwait. Following the conclusion of claims processing, approximately 1.5 million claimants were awarded US$52.4 billion in compensation.
Funds to pay compensation were drawn from the United Nations Compensation Fund which received a percentage of the proceeds generated by the export sales of Iraqi petroleum and petroleum products.
The final payment of compensation was made in January 2022 and a special session of the Governing Council was held on 9 February 2022 to mark the fulfilment of the Commission’s mandate. At that session, the Governing Council adopted its final decision, decision 277, declaring that the Government of Iraq has fulfilled its international obligations to compensate all claimants awarded compensation by the Commission for losses and damages suffered as a direct result of Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait.
This achievement was marked with the adoption of Security Council resolution 2621 on 22 February 2022 which confirmed that the Commission’s claims process is now complete and final, and terminated the mandate of the Commission. The resolution also called for the Commission to conclude the outstanding matters necessary for its closure by the end of 2022.
At today’s session, the Governing Council noted that in accordance with resolution 2621, the Commission has concluded all residual matters, including the dissolution of the Compensation Fund and the return of the remaining balance in the Fund to the Government of Iraq.
The Governing Council reiterated its appreciation to the Governments of Iraq and Kuwait for their cooperation with the Commission over the years. The Council also acknowledged the support provided by the United Nations Office at Geneva.
After more than 31 years, the work of the Compensation Commission’s Governing Council has come to an end and the Commission will formally close on 31 December 2022.
Further information about the Commission can be found on its website.