Tehran conference urges application of humanitarian terms on use of weapons

Head of ICRC mission in Iran Oliver Martin

Head of ICRC mission in Iran Oliver Martin

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian and foreign experts participating in a conference in Tehran urged the world to consider humanitarian values when using Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMDs) and conventional arms.

During a round-table meeting in the Iranian capital, experts from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) and Iran’s National Committee of Humanitarian Law (NCHL) discussed ways to prevent the spread and use of WMDs and conventional arms worldwide under international laws.

“The aim of this first ever roundtable was to enable views to be exchanged freely on the impact in humanitarian terms of certain weapons and how their use is governed by international humanitarian law,” Head of ICRC mission in Iran Oliver Martin said.

He also underscored the need for the further promotion of ties with relevant Iranian organizations in a bid to create a WMD-free world in the near future.

The round-table came after a relevant conference at Allameh Tabatabaee University in Tehran on February 17.

Organized by Iran’s NCHL in cooperation with the ICRC, the conference mainly addressed issues on prevention and prohibition of WMDs and conventional arms across the globe.

The Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyed Ali Khamenei in the opening ceremony of the 16th Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit in Tehran said Iran considers using nuclear and chemical weapons as a big guilt and inexcusable.

He urged participants in the conference to call on governments having nuclear arsenal to act upon their commitment to NPT and avoid any kind of development of or research on nuclear weapons, any kind of threat to use this kind of weapons against other governments and any kind of remodeling atomic weapons and their installations and deployment of such weapons in other states’ territories.

Iran has always stressed the urgent need to the dismantlement of the WMDs, including chemical weapons, as it has been a victim of such weapons.

Tens of thousands of Iranians were killed and wounded by chemical weapons during the 1980-1988 Iraqi imposed war on Iran. Around 100,000 Iranians are still living with the effects, which include long-term respiratory problems, eye and skin problems as well as immune system disorders, psychological disorders, genetic disorders, and probably cancers.

Sardasht is a city in Northwestern Iran. According to the 2006 census, its population was 37,000. It lies in the West Azarbaijan province. It was the first city in which civilians where attacked with chemical weapons by former Iraqi dictator, Saddam Hussein during the imposed Iraqi war on Iran.

The population of Sardasht is Kurdish. Sardasht is also known for the many villages around it and their reliability on the city’s market.

On June 28, 1987, Iraqi aircraft dropped what Iranian authorities believed to be mustard gas bombs on Sardasht, in two separate bombing runs on four residential areas.

Sardasht was the first town in the world to be gassed. Out of a population of 20,000, 25% are still suffering severe illnesses from the attacks.

By Fars News Agency