ICBUW News Date: 2010/1/23
Subject: Iraq littered with high levels of nuclear and dioxin contamination, study finds (The Guardian, Jan. 22)
Greater rates of cancer and birth defects near sites
Depleted uranium among poisons revealed in report
More than 40 sites across Iraq are contaminated with high levels or
radiation and dioxins, with three decades of war and neglect having left
environmental ruin in large parts of the country, an official Iraqi
study has found.
Areas in and near Iraq’s largest towns and cities, including Najaf,
Basra and Falluja, account for around 25% of the contaminated sites,
which appear to coincide with communities that have seen increased rates
of cancer and birth defects over the past five years. The joint study by
the environment, health and science ministries found that scrap metal
yards in and around Baghdad and Basra contain high levels of ionising
radiation, which is thought to be a legacy of depleted uranium used in
munitions during the first Gulf war and since the 2003 invasion.