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Annan to show oil-for-food notes

From CNN Senior United Nations Correspondent Richard Roth

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Annan consulted with Security Council members on release of the notes.

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Iraq
United Nations
Kofi Annan

UNITED NATIONS (CNN) -- U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan intends to turn over notes of closed-door Security Council meetings related to sanctions on Iraq in the years before the 2003 invasion to the oil-for-food inquiry run by Paul Volcker, Annan told council members Wednesday.

The notes are among documents Volcker has requested for his investigation, and a spokesman for Annan said the secretary-general wanted to consult with the Security Council first.

Annan told other council members of his decision in a private meeting, and one diplomat said no country objected to the move.

Richard Grenell, a spokesman for the U.S. mission to the United Nations, said Washington believes any documents "should be turned over immediately."

Volcker's next major report is expected to focus on companies and countries and any role they played in the allegations of misconduct in the now-defunct oil-for-food program, which supplied Iraq with food and medicine from 1996 until the U.S. led invasion that toppled former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein.

Volcker's independent inquiry was approved by the Security Council last year. The former chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve may issue an interim report this northern summer before larger conclusions in either August or September.

U.N. officials say Wednesday's unannounced session served as an update for the Security Council on the oil-for-food probe. Annan said the Volcker commission has requested more money for its work, two diplomats told CNN.

Grenell said the United States "is looking into the request for additional funds."

Iraq sold a total of $64 billion through the oil-for-food program. Besides allegations of mismanagement, the program is being investigated because Saddam exploited it to extort several billion dollars in surcharges on the oil sold and kickbacks on the humanitarian goods bought. Those illicit funds were deposited in bank accounts controlled by Saddam.

In addition, Saddam bypassed the program by selling billions of dollars of oil to neighboring Jordan, Turkey, Syria and Egypt.

Several U.S. congressional committees are investigating the program as well.

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