According to al-Sharei, the two countries must first collaborate in developing legislation for equitably sharing the fields before oil extraction can begin, noting, "The problem of the common fields can be resolved by developing legal mechanisms."
While Iraq and Kuwait are now at peace, many of the border issues that led to conflict two decades ago remain, which no amount of diplomatic bonhomie can completely paper over.
In 1993 the United Nations Security Council Resolution 833 precisely delineated the previous borders between Iraq and Kuwait following Saddam Hussein’s invasion of his neighbor in August 1990. Iraqi forces were summarily expelled by a 34-nation coalition led by the United States during Operation Desert Storm, which began in February 1991. That conflict left Iraq with a $22 billion reparations bill to Kuwait that it is still struggling to pay off, tithing 5 percent of its oil revenue to its tiny plutocratic southern neighbor.