Statement of Newweapons Committee at the International Citizens Tribunal
By Paola Manduca, Geneticist, University of Genoa, Italy. Text prepared for the International Citizens Tribunal, 22-24 February 2008, Brussels.
Abstract: Within a week from July 12, 2006 Doctors in Lebanon and in Gaza denounced weapons previously unseen by Medical personnel which in both cases had long experience of emergency medicine in warfare situation. The question that reached us was: “we never saw before wounds and corpses like those that arrive in the ward …what are these new weapons that cause such wounding and horrible deaths? Help us to find out what to do for the people” . The large majority of victims were women children and elders, in both locations, as direct consequence of the attacks on housing, markets, streets and communication roads and of the use of largely excessive force.
In response to this call independent scientists, doctors, information people and NGOs present in the territories in agreement with the local counterparts constituted a loose group of work that was called Newweapons which is working from the “side of the victims”, or from the “other side of the weapons”, not to count causalities, but to learn about the causing agents and in order to prevent further deaths and health consequences. Our work is mostly concerned with researching and analyzing reports and data to understand the agents utilized in the war and to promote risk assessment surveys for the effects on individuals and population of the weapons utilized. In order to know how to cure and protect survivors by medical and predictive studies. This implies actions at different levels and at different times and for different length of time and multiple professional actors and methodologies: information collection and information verification, survey, analysis and elaboration of data, sharing of all the tasks with concerned local partners, providing the results to tribunals or for other initiatives.
We had 3 missions in Lebanon, and 5 to Gaza, the first in October 2006 and one is underway while I talk here. All were directed to collaborate with scientists, health association and Doctors and all the information I bring to you, including photographic documentation, is released with the permission to disclose it, and was verified by us in multiple conversions.
We report here evidences of the use of new weapons tested by Israel in the field during the July attacks, and even before in Gaza, and of already known weapons utilized illegally, specifically it: documents the use of thermobaric weapon on a civil structure and in open air illustrates attacks on civilians and the use of weapons that do not leave traces in the body shows circumstantial evidences of the use of LCD (Low Collateral Damage) weapons and DIME (Dense Inert Metal Explosive).
Read the full text: newweapons_brussels.pdf
Italian translation: newweapons_brussels_it.pdf
Additional info slides: additional_info_tribunal_lebanon.pdf
Article on Peacereporter on the tribunal (Italian): http://www.peacereporter.net/dettaglio_articolo.php?idpa=&idc=6&ida=&idt=&idart=10326