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[casi] Iraq Peace Team: War Report - 29 March


ATTACK ON BAGHDAD -  March 29, 2003

[NOTE : This reports aims to present accurate,
reliable and prompt information about Iraqi civilian
casualties and damage to Iraqi civilian
infrastructure. The reports will be organized
according to date with the most recent at the top.
Completely new reports will be presented in a "NEW"
section at the top. Revised reports will follow. When
known, dates on specific incidents will be in
parenthesis in the title. Individuals whose
photographs accompany this report will be marked with
an asterisk in the Report; dates photos were taken
will be in parenthesis. This report includes only new
and revised reports. A complete report will be
distributed periodically.]

The largest carnage of Iraqi civilians yet since the
beginning of U.S. bombings occurred on March 28 at
about 6 PM when a bomb fell on a heavily crowded open
air market in the predominantly Shiite district of Al
Sholeh in North Baghdad, a very poor neighborhood. An
IPT visited the Al Naser Market the following day,
observed the bombsite, and talked with neighbors and
witnesses. The main hit was on an asphalted lane
between a row of metal booths and a row of tents. The
crater in the asphalt appeared to be about 1 meter
deep and about 3 meters in diameter. The death toll
had risen to 57, two of the injured having died after
arriving at the Al Nur hospital, according to Dr.
Ibrahim Sayid Ahmed. Of the 48 injured remaining
hospsitalized, 22 had been transferred to specialized
units, he said. Most of the injured that IPT talked to
had received shrapnel wounds in their arms, legs, and
stomachs. Others injured were transported to Al
Khadamia hospital. A piece of metal from the weapon
was obtained from one of the children gathered there
who offered it from his pocket.  It appeared to be
from the casing. Three spots of blood from dead people
(according to standers-by) still lay on the ground.

The injured included:
Zaina Kadhea*, 14, boy, with a leg injury, one arm
broken. and a head injury;
Iklaas Fesg*, 26, woman, and;
Raison Zait Mohammed*, 55, leg and arm broken.

While visiting the hospital, the IPT team
investigating the Al Naser Market incident learned
from Dr. Ahmed that earlier on Friday, March 28, a
bomb had fallen on a house in the same district of Al
Sholeh. There were five children in the house, the
doctor said, and two had died, a boy of two and a girl
of three. The IPT team saw two of the injured, Sajad
Mohammed*, 3, whose little brother died, and Saja
Jaafar*, about 2, whose sister had been killed.

On March 28, the IPT team visited a recently bombed
house in the Ragibaa District of Khatoon in Al-Athenia
City on Road 7, #320. The team interviewed Mustaffa*,
a next-door neighbor, and Mustaffa Kasu*, a neighbor
across the street and took photographs of the scene.

On March 27, an IPT team visited the home of the
Abdullah Haamad Hassawi family, House #74, Street #3,
District 317, located in Al Tujjaar, a residential
neighborhood in Al Shaab in North Baghdad. Next door
to their home, the team saw damage to windows of the
Balquis Secondary School for Girls. In the Hassawi
family home, the team saw rubble from walls on the
second floor roof patio in the courtyard below, as
well as hundreds of marks in the outer walls made from
small, uniform, cubed, metal pellets with sharp edges
three to five millimeters thick. In an upstairs room,
there was a large blood stained mattress on the floor.

Family members reported that Muneed Abid Haamid, 25,
and his 23-year-old wife, Sahhar, and their 6-year-old
son, Qaiser Muhweb, had been lying on their mattress
upstairs when metal fragments from the bomb came in
through the window. Muneed said that he instinctively,
immediately covered his wife and child with his body
and soon felt blood pouring out of his stomach. These
fragments broke the glass and hit and injured them
all. Muneed suffered major wounds in his stomach,
thighs, legs, and feet. His wife and son had their
legs broken. They were taken to the Al Numann Hospital
in the Aldemia area.

The large number of pellet marks on the walls, from
top to bottom, but not on the floor of the patio or
downstairs in the courtyard, and the low level of
damage done to the building, suggested to the team
that a fragmentation bomb may have exploded about
eight feet above the roof patio and sprayed pellets
into the walls. From that point, the bomb could have
blasted fragments through the window, hitting the
three injured, as well as blown out the windows of the
school next door. The IPT team removed three pellets
from one wall. Dr. Jacques Beres, a French plastic
surgeon with 35 years experience working in war zones
later confirmed that the pellets were indeed from a
fragmentation bomb.

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