US stays away from Kuwait's Iraq fuel probe-papers
Thursday April 15, 9:42 am ET
KUWAIT, April 15, 2004 (Summary of Reuters Article) - The Kuwaiti government is investigating a contract in which Halliburton and its subcontractor may have illegally overcharged the U.S. taxpayer for oil and gas imported into Kuwait. But Kuwait announced it wants to delay submitting a final report on the investigation because the U.S. army declined to testify. "We are disappointed as the Americans are a key ally ... We had hoped for cooperation, especially since this case is of interest to both countries," Ali al-Rashed, who heads the parliamentary fact-finding panel, was quoted by daily al-Seyassah as saying. The Kuwaiti government is investigating evidence that KBR overcharged the U.S. government by $61 million for importing oil and gas into Iraq via a Kuwaiti subcontractor, Altanmia Commercial Marketing Co. Kuwait established a five-member panel on February 16 to investigate state-run Kuwait Petroleum Corp. (KPC) and Altanmia and had 60 days from that date to report its findings, meaning a deadline of this week. The panel interviewed senior KPC executives, who denied any wrongdoing, and has said it also wants to hear the testimony of KBR and U.S. army officials. Both KBR and Halliburton declined to comment for this article.