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Disabled people—a new weapon of war?

By Katharine Quarmby  

On 1st February this year, two “suicide” bombers exploded material in two outdoor pet markets in Baghdad, Iraq, killing nearly 100 people.

A senior Iraqi military official claimed shortly afterwards that the two women had Down’s Syndrome and that their vests were detonated by remote control. Major General Jeffrey Hammond, commander of US forces in Baghdad, showed photographs of the alleged bombers to a small number of journalists and commented: “These two women were likely used because they didn’t understand what was happening and were less likely to be searched”. One journalist who was at the press conference, Larry Kaplow,…

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