Over 1Mln Iraqis May Have Suffered From Use of Uranium Shells by US
"1.2 million citizens were irradiated [due to the use of depleted uranium shells by the US]. There are sources of pollution and people exposed to high doses of radiation. They need to be taken care of, they must be provided with diagnostics and medical care, hospitals, medicines," al-Azzawi said.
"In 2003-2004, they used 181,000 of such shells not only in Basrah, but also in Baghdad, Karbala, Najaf, Baqubah, Al-Fallujah. In 2004, they were used them especially intensively in Al-Fallujah," the expert noted.
The expert noted that radioactive weapons have affected Iraqis even after the war. Landfills of Iraqi military equipment destroyed during the US military campaigns are a source of constant radiation and a hotbed of dangerous diseases. According to al-Azzawi, currently, there are up to 22 such dumps in Iraq. Moreover, sandstorms contribute to the spread of radiation, the expert added.
"After the 2003 occupation, there were about 330 facilities polluted with radioactive substances, including depleted uranium. After that, the number of such facilities reached 1,130. Therefore, there is a problem. However, this problem is not discussed openly with people affected by it," al-Azzawi said.
Naturally occurring uranium is composed of three isotopes, mainly of U-238, but also the U-235. The uranium remaining after the separation of the U-235 isotope from uranium ore is called depleted. In military industry, depleted uranium is used, specifically, for the production of ammunition capable of destroying strong concrete constructions. According to experts, depleted uranium can cause cancer and other serious diseases.