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Evidence was growing this weekend that babies born in the Iraqi city of Fallujah – scene in 2004 of one of the few set-piece battles of the invasion – are exhibiting high rates of mortality and birth defects.
In September this year, say campaigners, 170 children were born at Fallujah General Hospital, 24 per cent of whom died within seven days.
Three-quarters of these exhibited deformities, including "children born with two heads, no heads, a single eye in their foreheads, or missing lim
The campaigners' letter to the UN calls for an independent investigation to be set up, "the cleaning up of toxic materials used by the occupying forces, including depleted uranium and white phosphorus", and an inquiry launched to discover if any war crimes have been committed.
The campaigners believe that either white phosphorus or depleted uranium is a major, if not only, cause of the birth defects. White phosphorus, which US military has admitted firing on insurgents in heavily populated Fallujah