2000-2009 | Blair's crimes | Civilians slaughtered | Iraq

British cluster bombs kill 38 and injure 156 Iraqi civilians

Six year old Abdullah was severely injured by a British cluster munitions strike in Basra in 2003 – ©DanChurchAid – CC BY 2.0 – crop.

31 March 2003

On 31 March 2003,  British artillery fired cluster munitions during operations in the Iraqi city of Hillah, 100 km south of Baghdad. According to Human Rights Watch

‘In the neighborhood of Nadir, a slum on the south side of the city, every household Human Rights Watch visited suffered personal injury or property damage during a March 31 cluster attack. On the day of the strike, the hospital treated 109 injured civilians from that neighborhood, including thirty children. According to local elders, the attack killed thirty-eight civilians and injured 156′

The report also noted the testimony of Dr. Sa`ad al-Falluji, director and chief surgeon of al-Hillah General Teaching Hospital, that ’90 percent of the injuries his hospital treated during the war were from submunitions.’  During the invasion, the UK admitted to using a total of 2,100 ground-launched cluster munitions, which accounted for over 100,000 submunitions.1


  1. ‘Coalition Conduct in the Ground War,’ Human Rights Watch, 2003 accessed at url https://www.hrw.org/reports/2003/usa1203/5.5.htm

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