420 civilians killed, 1,000 injured as a result of British-American air-strikes in Iraq

Since the United States and Britain started patrolling the so-called no-fly zones over Iraq in December 1998, "420 people have fallen victim to the British-American air-strikes and over 1,000 have suffered injuries only among the civilian population," The Russian Foreign Ministry announced on Wednesday. In an on-line Internet communiquй, the Foreign Ministry said once again that "the no-fly zones were established without the approval of the UN Security Council and are illegitimate from the point of view of international law." The Ministry also said that "in February of 2001, the U.S. and Britain stepped up their activity in the no-fly zones compared to the previous month, currently reaching the level of December 2000." It said that "the U.S.-British patrols have concentrated their attention on the southern Iraqi provinces. Of the 890 instances when the Iraqi air space was violated, 714 missions were flown from Kuwait and Saudi Arabia and 176 from Turkey," Interfax reports. "During the air patrols, missile strikes were launched against civilian targets three times," the Foreign Ministry charged.

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