WAR IN THE GULF: IRAQI LAB OF DEATH; British Soldiers Discover Stash of Chemical Warfare Training Gear

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), March 31, 2003 | Go to article overview

WAR IN THE GULF: IRAQI LAB OF DEATH; British Soldiers Discover Stash of Chemical Warfare Training Gear


Byline: TIM BUTCHER

A STASH of Iraqi training equipment for nuclear, biological and chemical warfare was uncovered by British troops yesterday.

The haul included a Geiger counter, nerve gas simulators, gas masks and protective suits.

One chemical appeared to be for testing for the deadly nerve gas Sarin.

It was marked with a set of instructions in both Russian and English.

The find was made at an Iraqi arms dump south of Basra, in territory now controlled by coalition forces.

And it came as Allied forces destroyed what top brass described as a "massive terrorist facility" in the north of the country.

Coalition commander General Tommy Franks said the successful attack had been made in the last 48 hours.

He would not give details of what had been found.

But he told a briefing at US Central Command in Qatar: "Ground troops, as we speak, are exploiting the results of that strike.

"The exploitation is in its very early stages.

"There will be a lot of speculation and a lot of discussion.

"We'll see how it goes over the days ahead as that camp is fully exploited.

"It's literally huge and so we have forces there now.

"They're doing their business and we won't speculate about what will be the result of that."

The weapons training find made in the south of Iraq was being hailed a propaganda boost for Britain and America.

It showed that nuclear, biological and chemical weapons training was at least available to Iraqi armed forces.

Coalition spokesman Captain Kevin Cooney said: "Until further tests are carried out on the vials of chemicals we have found, we do not know exactly what the material is. …

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