Tuesday, 20 February 2007

The battle to save Iraq's children

Its not the first time Iraqi children have felt the wrap for the political disagreements the people in charge of them have had. In 1999 Unicef estimated 500,000 children died, who ordinarily would have lived due to sanctions. Unicef said that children under five in Iraq were dying at more than twice the rate they were 10 years ago.

Yesterday it was revealed that once again Iraqi children are dying due to lack of basic resources. Nearly 100 eminent doctors signed a letter yesterday revealing the desperate plight of children who are dying in Iraqi hospitals for the lack of simple equipment that in some cases can cost as little as 95p.

They are backed by a group of international lawyers, who say the conditions in hospitals revealed in their letter amount to a breach of the Geneva conventions that require Britain and the US as occupying forces to protect human life.

In a direct appeal to Tony Blair, the doctors describe desperate shortages causing "hundreds" of children to die in hospitals. The signatories include Iraqi doctors, British doctors who have worked in Iraqi hospitals, and leading UK consultants and GPs.

Doctor's have said: "Sick or injured children who could otherwise be treated by simple means are left to die in hundreds because they do not have access to basic medicines or other resources" and "Children who have lost hands, feet and limbs are left without prostheses. Children with grave psychological distress are left untreated"

If we are so intent on having a war in Iraq should we not at least still provide basic medical care for the innocent bystanders...Iraq's children.

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