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Sultan Reportedly Says $10 Million in Aid Was Not for Use by Contras

January 17, 1987|United Press International

WASHINGTON — The Sultan of Brunei said he provided $10 million to be used for humanitarian purposes in Central America but not for use by the contras in Nicaragua, columnist Jack Anderson reported Friday.

The sultan, ruler of the tiny oil-rich nation on the northeastern coast of Borneo, also said that Secretary of State George P. Shultz personally requested the $10-million donation, Anderson said.

Shultz, who visited Brunei in 1986, denied that he personally sought the money in testimony to a congressional committee Dec. 8, but said Assistant Secretary of State Elliott Abrams, with "my authority explicitly," did persuade a "third country" to make such a donation. Other officials said the country was Brunei.

Sultan's Role Explained

In a "carefully worded statement" explaining the sultan's role in the Iran-contra scandal, Brunei officials told Anderson's associate, Dale Van Atta:

"His Majesty the Sultan . . . said that he had made a personal donation to the United States to be used for humanitarian purposes in Central America.

"The donation was made at the request of the United States secretary of state, Mr. George Shultz, in the summer of 1986.

"It was his majesty's understanding from the personal representative of Mr. Shultz that the donation would be devoted to welfare purposes, and his majesty assumed that it had been so applied.

"Once the money had been paid it was beyond his control," the statement said.

Anderson reported that "if the sultan had known that the $10 million was to be used to help the anti-Sandinista rebels, he would not have given the money, the Bruneian officials told us."

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