Media Library

03/09/2018

30 years ago: Halabja – The victims of the genocide crimes are still suffering today

New report draws attention to the long-term effects of the poison gas attack

On March 16 and 17, 1988, the air force of the regime of Saddam Hussein had attacked Halabja with poison gas. At least 5,000 people had died within a few hours. Photo: Sammy Six via Flickr

On occasion of the forthcoming 30th anniversary of the poison gas attack against the Iraqi Kurdish city of Halabja, the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) has published a new human rights report. It allows the victims and their family members to share their view – and it draws attention to the aftermath of this atrocious attack.

On March 16 and 17, 1988, the air force of the regime of Saddam Hussein had attacked Halabja with poison gas. The attack had also been made possible by companies from Germany and other European countries – by helping to build the poison gas production facilities, for example. At least 5,000 people had died within a few hours, and about 10,000 were injured.

To this day, the people of Halabja are suffering from the consequences of this attack, which many governments have meanwhile recognized as a genocide. The 27-page report contains excerpts of interviews with representatives from the fields of politics and the civil society, focusing on, among other things, the unusually high number of cases of malignant cancer, of skin diseases, respiratory problems, infertility, miscarriages, and congenital malformations. Further, there is still a lack of funding to establish a medical infrastructure that is able to ensure sufficient care for the surviving victims.

“There must finally be a fund for Halabja and the surrounding villages, and initiatives to improve the medical and economic infrastructure. In addition, the victims expect an apology from the German government – with regard to the fact that German companies participated in the Iraqi chemical weapons program. Further, we demand that no weapons should be allowed to be delivered to the region, especially in connection with Turkey’s ongoing war of aggression against the Kurds in Syria.”

The STP has been advocating for the people of Halabja for decades. We would like to invite you to learn more about the situation by reading our human rights report focusing on the 30th anniversary of the attack on Halabja, which also provides information regarding the background of the attack and the involvement of German companies.

You can download the german version of the human right report here.

 

Header Photo: Sammy Six via Flickr