08.10.2001 12:37 
About 100 cruise missiles fired at targets in

    MOSCOW/DUSHANBE. Oct 8 (Interfax) - Up to 20 U.S.
strategic bombers and around 50 ship-based warplanes
took part in the strikes on targets in Afghanistan,
military sources in Moscow and Dushanbe told Interfax.

    More than 50 cruise missiles were fired at Afghan
targets from warships and submarines [Tomahawks*]in
the Arabian Sea. About 40 cruise missiles were
launched from strategic bombers. 
    All in all, there were "three series of strikes"
on targets in Afghanistan. 
    The first attack was made from 8:30 p.m. until
10:00 p.m. Moscow time on Sunday. The targets were
military airfields, air defense systems and Taliban
command posts. "This was the strongest strike," an
expert said. 
    The second attack took place from 10:30 p.m. until
12:00 a.m. Moscow time. It involved B-52, B-1B and B-2 strategic bombers
and ship- based warplanes. The targets were the military infrastructure
and positions of the Taliban. 
    The third attack began at approximately 3:00 a.m.
Moscow time and lasted for about two hours. It also
involved strategic bombers from Diego Garcia in the
Indian Ocean, and planes from warships in the Arabian

NATO using depleted uranium weapons

Sunday Herald
Glasgow, Scotland

By Felicity Arbuthnot and Darran Gardner
April 4 1999

Deadly depleted uranium weapons, blamed for spiralling
numbers of cancers and birth defects in Iraq, are
being used by NATO forces in Yugoslavia. 

Both Tomahawk Cruise missiles and munition rounds used
by American Warthog bombers contain the radioactive
waste material. While British forces launched their
first cruise missiles from the submarine HMS Splendid
this weekend, American forces have already fired more
than 100 at targets across Yugoslavia. 

The weapons, first used in the Gulf War in 1991,
require depleted uranium (DU) for their armour
piercing coating. The DU is imported under licence
from America and manufactured into tank-busting shells
by Royal Ordnance in the English Midlands, before
being shipped to storage in South Wales and at 
Chapelcross in Dumfriesshire. 

DU shells have been linked to Gulf War Syndrome, which
is thought to be responsible for the deaths of more
than 400 UK war veterans. DU munitions are currently
listed by the UN as weapons of mass destruction. 

Dan Fahy of the US Military Toxics Projects, an
American environmental pressure group, told the Sunday
Herald: "The Tomahawk cruise missiles now being used
in the Balkans, and those used during Desert Storm as
well as those used against Iraq in 1996 and December
1998, contain depleted uranium in their tips to
provide weight and stability. 

"When they impact a target or other hard surface, the
area can be contaminated by uranium. " 

Fahy warned that further contamination could occur if
European and US forces launched a ground war against
the Serbian forces of President Slobodan Milosevic.
"If tanks go in, there will be further spread of DU." 

According to Chris Helman, a senior analyst for the
Centre of Defence Information in Washington, it would
be "an aberration" for American Warthogs not to use DU munitions. 

The lethal nature of exposure to DU has been well
documented since the war in Iraq. A report sent by the
United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority to the 
British government in 1990, warned that if the 50
tonnes of residual uranium dust was left in the Gulf
area there would be more than half a million extra 
cancers by the end of the century. Up to 900 tonnes
was left throughout Iraq and Kuwait. 

In Scotland, DU has already been linked to a leukaemia
cluster around the MoD firing range at Dundrennan,
near the Solway Firth. Communities close to the 
range, where 7,000 shells have been tested since 1983,
show the highest rate of childhood leukaemia in the

After the Defence Evaluation and Research Agency
(DERA) recently found radioactive contamination on the
site, people living near the range have been 
increasingly anxious about the long-term health
implications. Backed by their MP Alisdair Morgan, they
have called for an independent health and
environmental study to be carried out. 

Despite the information provided by Fahy and Helman, a spokesman for the
Ministry of Defence dismissed as "nonsense" the claim that British and
American Tomahawks contained DU. 

Major Rick Jones, spokesman for Supreme Headquarters
Allied Powers in Europe, said: "We don't comment on
any ordnance." Both Nato and the Pentagon refused 
to comment. 

                                   Serbian News Network - SNN

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