IK/168

                                                      SC/5813

                                                      28 March 1994





     CROWD ATTACKS SPECIAL COMMISSION HELICOPTER DURING MEDICAL EVACUATION







     The following has been received from the Special Commission set up under

Security Council resolution 687 (1991) in connection with the disposal of

Iraq's weapons of mass destruction:





     During a medical evacuation operation in Mosul, Iraq, a Special

Commission helicopter was attacked by a crowd.  Stones were thrown at the

aircraft, damaging the rotor blades and fuselage and smashing three of the

windows.  Iraqi military personnel at the site of the incident failed to

protect the helicopter.



     The incident happened yesterday at 4 p.m. local time at the Saddam

Hospital in Mosul.  The Special Commission had been requested by the United

Nations Guards to assist in the medical evacuation of two guards suffering

from gunshot wounds received when their bus was ambushed.  The Iraqi

authorities had been informed of the operation and had expressed agreement to

it.



     Upon landing at the hospital, the helicopter was surrounded by a crowd.

When the ambulance arrived with the two guards, the crowd sought to hinder its

passage to the aircraft and started to throw stones.  Only a few of the Iraqi

military personnel on hand sought to intervene, ineffectively.  Once the

injured had been loaded onto the helicopter, the Iraqi soldiers gave up their

efforts to control the crowd, who pelted the helicopter with stones, placing

the aircraft and those on board in severe danger.



     The Iraqi Government is required, under its obligations in respect of

United Nations operations in Iraq and, in particular, under the status

arrangement through which the Special Commission operates in Iraq set out in

resolution 707 (1991) and the plans for ongoing monitoring and verification

approved by resolution 715 (1991), to ensure the safety and security of

Special Commission personnel and property.







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