Israeli cluster bomb slays Lebanese woman

TYRE, Lebanon: A Lebanese woman was badly wounded in the South of the country on Friday in the explosion of a cluster bomblet dropped by Israeli forces during last summer’s war, police said. The woman, Abdeh Mohammad Khanafer, 70, was gathering herbs in a field at Aynata village near Bint Jbeil, six kilometers from the Israeli border, when she touched a bomblet that detonated, they said.She was badly wounded in the face, arms and torso and was rushed to hospital in the port town of Tyre, 80 kilometres south of Beirut. According to the United Nations Mine Action Coordination Center, more than 222 people have fallen prey to cluster bomblets in the past six months. Of the victims, 190 have been civilian.

At least 27 people have been killed by them since the conflict ended on August 14, 2006, according to an AFP tally.

The munitions dropped by Israel during its devastating air war against Lebanon included more than a million cluster bomblets, around 40 percent of which failed to detonate on impact, according to the UN.

Cluster munitions spread bomblets over a wide area from a single container.

The bomblets often do not explode on impact, but can do so later at the slightest touch, making them as deadly as anti-personnel landmines. – AFP



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