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Wednesday, May 24

Afghans' uranium levels spark alert

By Alex Kirby BBC News Online environment correspondent

A small sample of Afghan civilians have shown "astonishing" levels of uranium in their urine, an independent scientist says. Critics suspect new weapons were used in Afghanistan.

He said they had the same symptoms as some veterans of the 1991 Gulf war. But he found no trace of the depleted uranium (DU) some scientists believe is implicated in Gulf War syndrome.

Other researchers suggest new types of radioactive weapons may have been used in Afghanistan.

The scientist is Dr Asaf Durakovic, of the Uranium Medical Research Center (UMRC), based in Canada. Dr Durakovic, a former US army adviser who is now a professor of medicine, said in 2000 he had found "significant" DU levels in two-thirds of the 17 Gulf veterans he had tested.


Rest of story at the BBC.

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