Iran calls Halabja chemical attack a ‘big anti-human tragedy’

March 15, 2020 - 21:30

TEHRAN – Iran’s Consul General in Sulaymaniyah Mehdi Shoushtari has said that the Iraqi Baath regime’s chemical attack on the Kurdish city of Halabja in northern Iraq was a “big anti-human tragedy”.

 On March 16, 1988, Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein ordered air force to attack Halabja in northern Iraq with chemical bombs, using nerve agents such as VX and mustard gas. The attack killed between 3,200 and 5,000 people and injured 7,000 to 10,000 more, most of them civilians.

“Undoubtedly, this criminal incident against the innocent people of Halabja by a criminal regime through using chemical weapons manufactured by certain Western countries, which make claims about defending human rights, was one of the biggest anti-human tragedies,” he said in a message to Halabja Governor Azad Tofigh.

Shoushtari also said, “The Islamic Republic of Iran fulfilled its Islamic and humanitarian duty in this respect and supported the people of Halabja. These supports continued in different periods of time during history such as fighting terrorism and extremism.” 

Preliminary results from surveys of the affected region showed an increased rate of cancer incidence and birth defects in the years after the attack.

The Halabja attack was part of the Al-Anfal Campaign in northern Iraq. The attack has been recognized as a distinct event of genocide conducted against the Kurdish people by the Saddam regime. The Iraqi High Criminal Court recognized the Halabja massacre as an act of genocide on March 1, 2010.

NA/PA

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