Socialist Worker

Galloway: ‘Let them bring these charges’

Issue No. 1974

The US Senate committee humiliated by Respect MP George Galloway in May launched another round of smears this week.

Galloway, who was not even shown the reheated allegations, hit back immediately.

He said he was prepared to fly out to the US if Senator Norm Coleman, who heads the committee, was prepared to bring charges.

Of the allegation that he gave “false and misleading testimony” when he refuted claims that he took money from Iraq’s oil for food programme, Galloway says:

“I deny that absolutely. As I’ve said a thousand times, I’ve never benefited personally. Let Coleman bring these charges and I’ll rebut them totally.”

It is understood that senior members of the deposed Iraqi regime have made statements to the committee, including Tariq Aziz, former vice president Taha Yasin Ramadan and the former oil minister Amer Rashid.

“I’ve never met Ramadan or Rashid but I do know that they are facing charges which may carry a death sentence — as is Tariq Aziz,” says Galloway.

“He has been held incommunicado for two years—and we know what goes on in US controlled prisons in Iraq — and we also know from his lawyers that he has been offered a deal to testify.

“On the one hand the US accuses these men of being homicidal maniacs, on the other they assert that their coerced testimony is utterly trustworthy.”

Galloway denies soliciting oil allocations or receiving “one thin dime” from the oil for food programme. He also denies any knowledge that his estranged wife, Dr Amineh Abu-Zayyad, received approximately $150,000 in connection with oil allocations.

Galloway added that the fact that the Mariam Appeal, a political campaign, had received more than $446,000 from Jordanian businessman Fawaz Zureikat “cannot be news to anyone”.

“The Charity Commission investigated the Mariam Appeal, it scrutinised every penny in and every penny out and totally exonerated me from benefiting financially through the campaign,” he said.

The slurs against Galloway comes as judges in Britain are considering an appeal by the Daily Telegraph against a judgment last December that it had libelled Galloway over claims that he profited from Iraqi oil money.


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Sat 29 Oct 2005, 00:00 BST
Issue No. 1974
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