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Middle East

Volume 402: debated on Thursday 3 April 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations the Government has received from (a) Syria and (b) Iran on the firing of coalition missiles into (i) a bus carrying Syrian nationals from Iraq to Syria on 23 March and (ii) Iranian territory. [105589]

Our embassies in Damascus and Tehran have been in contact with the Syrian and Iranian Governments about these incidents. Under no circumstances would the Coalition deliberately target a civilian bus. This is a tragic accident, for which the US have already issued an apology. The Coalition is taking the utmost care to minimise civilian casualties. There are strong indications that the munitions that landed in Iranian territory were in fact Iraqi but the matter is still being examined.