Well-known Russian paediatrician Leonid Roshal is leaving for the US today to hold talks with UN and UNICEF representatives on evacuating children from Baghdad and Basra. He insists that the anti-Iraq coalition troops and Iraqi authorities should open a "green corridor" to evacuate children.
Roshal said he had discussed this problem at the US Embassy to Moscow on Friday, but to no avail. "The Americans did not say 'no', they will have to consult Washington", the doctor told RIA Novosti.
Later, however, the US announced that the green corridor could be dangerous both for children and for those who would be accompanying them.
Iraqi Ambassador to Moscow Abbas Khalaf said the Iraqi side had consented in principle to Doctor Roshal's initiative. The ambassador was not surprised at Washington's negative answer, saying it is "the aggressor that is killing civilians in Iraq".