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Bitter legacy of sanctions

              BBC NEWS 
              Friday, 1 December, 2000, 14:33 GMT 
              Eyewitness: Bitter legacy of sanctions 

              These mothers say sanctions killed their
              By Ben Brown in Baghdad 

              Saddam Hussein brought sanctions upon
              country - but it is not him who is
              Instead, the Iraqi people are paying the
              from the cradle to the grave. 

              In Iraq's hospitals, doctors say there
              frequent power cuts and only rudimentary

              equipment because of sanctions. 

              Many babies are severely malnourished
and of 
              every 1,000 babies born, 108 will die
              their first birthday. 

              Paediatrician Dr 
              Abdullah Hamzawi 
              showed me one baby in 
              his run-down ward. 
              "She weighs only 40% 
              of the weight she is 
              supposed to be," he 

              "Such babies carry the 
              risk of 50% mortality. 
              Fifty per cent she may 
              die. I just ask why 
              should this happen," he 

              Back in time 

              Ten years after sanctions were first
              Iraq is being driven further and further
back in 
              time. This oil-rich nation is becoming
more and 
              more under-developed 

              Even for babies lucky 
              enough to leave 
              hospital, the prospects 
              are a life of poverty 
              and misery. 

              In Iraq, education used 
              to be a priority, but 
              under sanctions and 
              Saddam, it comes 
              second to survival. 

              One 14-year-old boy I 
              met sells cigarettes to 
              support his family. Like 
              about half of Iraq's children, he's
dropped out 
              of school. 

              "My father is old, my mother can't work
and my 
              brother is a conscript. I have to sell
              to keep my family alive," he said. 

              If you do make it through school and on
              university, you might wonder whether
              worth it. Forget the internet, books
from the 
              1970s and 80s may be your latest works

              Brain drain 

              Although there is a brain drain from
Iraq, some 
              students are staying. 

              "Here education is free, 
              so I think it's my turn 
              to pay back, says one 
              young woman. "I'd stay 
              here and I'd serve my 

              But in Iraq's blockaded 
              economy, teachers and 
              civil servants, for 
              example, earn around 
              50p a week. Out on 
              the streets, many 
              choose to sell their 
              books to supplement their income. 

              What is the point of graduating, some
feel, if 
              you end up at an auction house, selling
              your most treasured possessions just to
              ends meet? 

              Recently, the United Nations have eased
              blockade and would lift it entirely if
              Hussein would comply with their demands.

              But for now, those with nothing left to
              have one last choice - to beg. 

              A decade on, this is still the agony of 
              sanctions, from birth until death.

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