The “International Conference for the Recovery of Stolen Funds” concluded in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, after two days of deliberations, which ended with the issuance of 18 recommendations.
According to the statement of the Iraqi Ministry of Justice, among the conference’s recommendations is “accelerating the implementation of the provisions of the international and Arab anti-corruption conventions (signed in 2003 and 2010, respectively)”.
The conference also recommended, “working to find unconventional means in the issue of money recovery and combating corruption, and to benefit from Arab cooperation mechanisms.”
He stressed, “the importance of building confidence between the requesting countries and the countries receiving requests for asset recovery, given that confidence-building is a way to strengthen political will.”
Among the recommendations is “Encouraging the conclusion of bilateral agreements between countries (cooperation agreements in the field of money recovery and combating corruption), and inviting the Arab Center to prepare guiding models for these agreements.”
He also recommended, “to take advantage of the work of government teams and professional experts provided by the United Nations through its specialized offices for the recovery of funds, as well as the competent United Nations agencies.”
The conference also focused on “the principle of good faith in the implementation of international legal obligations in the field of recovering looted funds, and what is required for the return of illegally obtained funds and assets.”
It was decided to submit the recommendations to the Executive Office of the Council of Arab Justice Ministers, as well as to deposit a copy of them with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, according to the same source.
Iraq hosted the conference over two days, in cooperation with the League of Arab States and with the participation of its Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit, a number of justice ministers and heads of Arab judicial bodies.
Iraq is among the countries most affected by corruption, embezzlement and smuggling of public funds out of the country.