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Kurdish official appeals for gas masks, aid to protect from new attack by Iraq

Iraqi Kurds are dismayed to see Israelis and others who are farther away receiving gas masks while they feel at the greatest risk of a repeat chemical weapons attack by Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, an official said Monday. “I don’t need anybody to convince me that Saddam Hussein has those weapons and that he will use them if he has the chance,” said Shafiq Qazzaz, recalling that Iraqi forces killed thousands of Iraqi Kurds with poison gas during the war against Iran in 1988. Qazzaz, who is responsible for humanitarian aid in autonomous Iraqi Kurdistan, said he has been receiving a sympathetic ear but no action from European governments. “Frankly, what dismays my people is delivery of gas masks and protective clothing. It is being done thousands of miles (kilometers) away while nobody is really thinking about the Kurds,” he told reporters during a visit to Geneva to meet with U.N. and other relief organizations. Full Story

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