WASHINGTON, June 22 (UPI) -- New York's Federal Reserve Bank won't tell how much it sent Iraq after the U.S. invasion, said an official investigating millions of dollars in missing funds.
Stuart Bowen Jr., special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, said he was told the reconstruction money in the New York bank came from an Iraqi account but Iraq's government won't sign off on allowing access to the information, Politico reported Wednesday.
Bowen must determine what happened to the reconstruction money, which went to Iraq in the early years after the 2003 U.S. invasion.
A congressional auditor has estimated that $6.6 billion of the President George W. Bush-era money was stolen but a top Iraqi official suggested the figure is nearly three times larger.
Parliament Speaker Osama al-Nujafi said earlier this week the missing U.S. funds total $18.7 billion.
Iraq's government may not want the United States to know the exact figure because it may be Iraqi officials themselves who made off with the cash, Politico reported.