Letter: Nato's victims

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Sir: Alice Mahon is right (letter, 30 July). The Nato bombing was a humanitarian disaster for the people of Yugoslavia. It is clear however that the leaders of the Nato powers would prefer that we should quietly forget about the civilian casualties.

In the House of Lords on 26 July, I asked what arrangements were being made to ensure that civilian victims of the bombing, whether Albanian or Serbian, received compensation for their injuries. I was surprised to be told that "as we do not believe our bombing was unlawful, the issue of compensation does not arise". Yet Nato itself acknowledged that "accidents" had happened, resulting in civilian casualties.

Can it really be true that it is "lawful" to drop cluster bombs and depleted uranium munitions on civilians? No, there is clearly a responsibility here and sooner or later the world community will expect us to meet it.


London NW6