Grim Christmas tree marks holiday in Iraq
January 1, 1998
Web posted at: 8:55 a.m. EST (1355 GMT)
BAGHDAD (CNN) -- There is a Christmas tree in Iraq's capital that bears a different kind of holiday message. It is covered with small white cards, each of which bears the name of a child who died during the seven years of economic sanctions against the country.
"This tree has been donated by the families of the kids who died because of the embargo. We want to remind the U.S. administration what the situation is," said Nabil Yaqoub, one of the organizers of the tree protest.
He said about 2 million children have died over seven years of sanctions.
The tree is outside the Polish embassy. The American embassy was closed down but the U.S. maintains a small diplomatic section inside the Polish embassy.
The United Nations has repeatedly stated sanctions against Iraq, which went into effect after Baghdad invaded Kuwait in 1990, will not be lifted until U.N. weapons inspectors certify that Iraq has completely eliminated its weapons of mass destruction.
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