Iran says environment damaged by Gulf War

March 16, 2011 at 8:30 AM
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TEHRAN, March 16 (UPI) -- The Persian Gulf War in 1991 left a devastating mark in the environment and ecosystem in Iraq and parts of Iran, a member of the Iranian Parliament said.

Nasser Sudani, an Iranian lawmaker on the country's energy commission, said the Gulf War left a black mark on the environment in Iran's southern provinces.

"The NATO invasion of Iraq has left negative impacts on Khuzestan's environment and ecosystem, including air and soil pollution and radiation," he was quoted by the semiofficial Fars News Agency as saying.

Khuzestan suffered the brunt of the effects of the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s. Sudani in the report didn't explain how the Gulf War in Iraq affected the Iranian environment.

In Iraq, the Iran report suggested there were rising rates of cancer and birth defects in Iraqi cities subjected to bombing with depleted uranium shells.

The Project on Government Oversight, a government watchdog group with headquarters in Washington, said last year the U.S. government has around 325 tons of bomb-grade uranium in its stockpiles.

The U.N. Security Council adopted a measure in 2009 that calls for HEU users to manage stocks "responsibly."

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