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U.S.: Security Risks Threatening Iraqi Reconstruction --> 19 October 2005 -- The special U.S. government inspector for Iraqi reconstruction says many rebuilding projects may have to be abandoned because of high security costs.

The inspector, Stuart Bowen, also told members of the U.S. Congress on 18 October that U.S. President George W. Bush's administration has not yet met its own goals of restoring Iraqi water, electricity and oil production to the levels they were before the March 2003 U.S. invasion.

Bowen said some estimates suggest that up to 26 percent of the billions of dollars in funding that the United States has been providing for Iraqi reconstruction has instead been spent protecting people, infrastructure, and facilities from insurgent attacks.

He said that as a result, money to complete originally envisioned reconstruction projects is not available. The U.S. Congress has so far approved about $30 billion to rebuild Iraq and train security forces.