Spain counts the cost of the Iraq war

Aside from the loss of thirteen lives in Iraq, Spain has now assessed the financial cost of helping the US-led invasion and occupation.

    All of Spain's 1430 troops have now returned home

    Defence Minister Jose Bono confirmed on Tuesday that the military deployment came with a price tag of $450 million, though the government had negotiated a favourable oil purchase agreement.

    Of the total, three quarters went into military-specific expenses while the remainder went towards humanitarian aid pledged at an international conference on Iraqi reconstruction last October and that event's organisation.

    Bono told parliament the bill included the cost of repatriating the 1430 soldiers sent to Iraq by the previous conservative government of Jose Maria Aznar.

    Political cost

    Aznar, a solid US ally over Iraq despite overwhelming public opposition, saw his right-wing Popular Party slump to a surprise defeat by the Socialist Party in 14 March general election.

    The defeat came just three days after deadly train bombings in Madrid which were blamed on Islamists in what was widely seen as revenge for Spanish participation in the US-led occupation.

    Spain suffered 13 fatalities in Iraq, including two journalists.

    Bono pointed to purchase rights for 15 million barrels of Iraqi crude oil reserved for Spanish energy firms Repsol YPF and Cepsa as the only upside to his country's participation in the Iraq campaign.

    However, there is also an embryonic energy agreement between a US firm and Soluziona, an offshoot of Spain's Union Fenosa.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Learn what India's parties' symbols mean by drawing them

    Learn what India's parties' symbols mean by drawing them

    More than 2,300 political parties have registered for the largest electoral exercise in the world.

    Visualising every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Visualising every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Arab states have launched more than 19,278 air raids across Yemen.

    Why did Bush go to war in Iraq?

    Why did Bush go to war in Iraq?

    No, it wasn't because of WMDs, democracy or Iraqi oil. The real reason is much more sinister than that.