Zarif Recalls Agony of Poison Gas Victims

Zarif Recalls Agony of Poison Gas VictimsZarif Recalls Agony of Poison Gas Victims

The foreign minister extended sympathies to the victims of chemical weapons in the 1980-1988 Iran-Iraq war, vowing to help restore their rights.

"June 28 coincides with the 28th anniversary of the chemical bombardment of the defenseless people of Sardasht by the former Iraqi Ba'ath regime and has been aptly named National Day of Campaign Against Chemical and Biological Weapons," Mohammad Javad Zarif said in a message on Sunday. On June 28, 1987, former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein ordered aircrafts to drop what is believed to have been mustard gas bombs on the northwestern city of Sardasht in two separate bombing runs on four residential areas, which killed over 100 civilians and injured hundreds of others.

Out of a population of 20,000, twenty-five percent are still suffering severe illnesses from the attacks.

Zarif criticized some western states for supplying Saddam Hussein with chemical arms and the international community for keeping silent on such brutal acts.

"During the Iraqi-imposed war, the camp of arrogance and the states backing the Ba'ath regime spared no effort to help it dislodge the nascent Islamic Revolution and the prodemocracy movement of the Iranian nation."

He urged the international community to fulfill its "moral" and "ethical" duty to help bring to trial those who committed the "inhumane" crime and their backers.

Iran as a victim of chemical weapons was actively involved in the compilation and passage of Chemical Weapons Convention to help prevent the reoccurrence of such tragedies, the message said.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran as an active member of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, along with other member states, will continue to strive to ensure the eradication of all chemical arsenals across the world, especially those of the US and Russia."