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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Iraq Survey Group Final Report


Biological Warfare
Annex B


BW Research and Development Facilities

Iraq’s BW program was initiated in early 1974 in a house in Al ‘Amiriyah, but soon after completion of basic buildings on a new site, Al Hasan’s Ibn-Sina Center, or site number 2 (or later Al Salman) the program was transferred to Ibn-Sina Center mid 1974. This site was heavily bombed in 1991 and was effectively not functional after that time. After the initial construction of a clinic, telephone exchange in mid-peninsula, a bacteriology laboratory building which appeared to have functional high containment capability. On the back of this building was an attached animal house. Next in line was a virus laboratory, compartmented into 6 laboratories. This represented “Phase 1.” Even before the transfer of the new BW program from Al ‘Amiriyah, plans were already established for another facility (the green cube) “Phase 2” which became available about the same time as the dissolution of the original Al Hasan Institute. The remaining biology program along with elements of the CW program was then emplaced in this building as was the newly created Research and Technical Center (later to become the TRC). In the early 1980s Phase 3 was completed in the form of the Toxicology Laboratory to which the militarily relevant program was transferred in 1987.

Revitalization of Iraq’s militarily relevant BW program was located at Al Muthanna from 1983 to 1987 when it was relocated to Al Salman. However, Al Muthanna continued to provide significant R&D assistance through 1990 particularly studies on aflatoxin and ricin as well as weapons field trials.

For many years, both before and following Desert Storm, the IIS conducted research and development of biological agents, such as ricin and aflatoxin, at several facilities discovered by ISG. Brief descriptions of these laboratories are presented below. The Al Safa’ah (AGRC), Al Salman and Al Muthanna sites were no longer functional after 1991 and thus further descriptions are not provided. Al Hakam, Al Manal, TABRC, Al Hamath, and the Al Tariq Company are deemed to have a significant post 1991 BW related capability and the descriptions follow. Baghdad University, College of Veterinary Medicine, al Razi Research Institute, al Kindi Veterinary Vaccines and Drug Company, Al ‘Amiriyah Serum and Vacccine Institute have the facilities and expertise to play an important role in a resurgent R and D program.

Al Hakam

The Al Hakam facility was destroyed by the Iraqis under UNSCOM supervision in 1996 because of the discovery of the key role it played in the Iraqi BW program. Historically, Al Hakam was Iraq’s primary BW agent production facility, producing Bacillus anthracis, Clostridium botulinum, Clostridium perfringens and simulant, Bacillus subtilis, for testing and ultimately, weaponization purposes. Following the first Gulf war, the Al Hakam plant was directed by Iraq to change its focus to civilian projects, which had been selected as a cover for its former BW program.

  • The civil projects chosen to replace the production of BW agents and using the same equipment at Al Hakam were the production of biopesticides (B. thuringiensis), SCP and biofertilizers. The equipment at the facility was considered dual-use and the production of materials such as B. thuringiensis (a known stimulant for the BW agent B. anthracis) and SCP (whose equipment could be used to produce C. botulinum), led to the fear that Al Hakam could potentially be producing BW agent or at the very least, be maintaining the infrastructure and production expertise necessary to quickly reactivate Iraq’s BW agent production capability.

Al Dawrah Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccine Plant

The FMDV plant was declared to UNSCOM as a facility that was used to produce botulinum toxin for offensive BW purposes from September 1990 until January 1991. After Iraq acknowledged its role in its BW program, UNSCOM disabled the FMDV plant’s high containment air handling system in 1996 by pouring a mixture of concrete and foam into its ducting. No laboratory or production work is currently conducted at the FMDV plant. The plant is currently being used as a central storage and distribution depot by the State Company for Veterinary Medicine. ISG has no information to suggest that the FMDV facility was involved in any BW-related research after the end of the first Gulf war in January 1991.

  • Freezers were discovered by ISG containing hundreds of perished isolates of foot and mouth virus. The facility was also storing laboratory equipment from other facilities and archives from other veterinary institutes. No research or scientific activity was occurring at the facility.
  • According to a source, the FMDV plant only produced vaccine up until 1990/91. The Main vaccine it produced was for Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) Type 0 (for sheep). It also produced types A20 and Asia (for cows). The plant exported its FMD vaccine to 13 other countries in the region. From 1990-1991, MIC took over the FMDV plant. While the MIC was operating the facility, they gave the FMDV employees a small area in which to conduct work that was separate from MIC activities. None of the workers from the FMDV plant were said to have been brought in to help MIC. However, this is contrary to what was communicated to UNSCOM.
  • Surveillance cameras were installed at the facility by UNSCOM in 1994/5 to monitor the activities at the facility until and following the removal and destruction of some key equipment. Cameras were also mounted in the plant’s production department. Until some time prior to OIF, tapes were retrieved every two weeks by a local security company on behalf of the UN. The purpose of the cameras, after the building was rendered harmless in 1996, was to assure the equipment was not removed and installed at another location without proper notification to the UN.

Tuwaitha Agricultural and Biological Research Center

ISG investigated work into Bacillus thuringiensis and Single Cell Protein carried out at the TABRC. ISG exploited TABRC in 2003. During the exploitation, significant documentary evidence of ongoing research relative to Bt at TABRC and a number of equipment items which were capable of being used for production of small-to-pilot scale quantities of biological material. Numerous fermentors and bio-reactors were found, some of which should have been reported to UNSCOM or UNMOVIC but were not. The underground storage of laboratory equipment was likely to protect that equipment from coalition bombing.

  • TABRC was part of the IAEC within the Tuwaitha Nuclear Research Complex. Its mission was primarily agricultural science research and development, and the majority of its activities was directed toward crop improvement and integrated pest management. This facility possessed a mature scientific staff with expertise in recombinant DNA technology, microbiology, entomology, and access to agricultural pathogens. The center had research and development arrangements with other Iraqi biotechnology entities and possessed numerous pieces of equipment that could be used for either peaceful purposes or for development and production of BW agents (i.e., dual-use equipment). The facility was located within a high-security complex associated with other facilities of interest.
  • ISG assesses that TABRC was not involved in any significant BW-specific activity. Work with Bt appears to have been laboratory scale only and primarily directed toward expanding the insect host range of Bt isolates. There was no evidence to support earlier ISG contentions that attempts were underway at TABRC to engineer B. thuringiensis to be pathogenic for humans.
  • ISG conducted detailed site exploitations of TABRC over a period of several days. The determination was made that the site contained numerous pieces of UNSCOM-tagged equipment, as well as multiple pieces of undeclared equipment, that would be useful for BW agent production. The equipment ranged from a declared 750-liter double-jacketed stainless steel fermentor to an undeclared 5-liter fermentor. ISG found no information indicating any of this equipment was either intended or used for BW purposes.

Al Hamath

The Al Hamath facility was exploited on 19 April 03, which determined that the area was used for agricultural purposes and the activities assessed to have occurred at the site were determined not to be BW-related. The facility was heavily looted before it was exploited in April 2003. A local national at the site reported that the facility had been under military control and prior to UNMOVIC inspections the military had removed all the equipment from the site. Field laboratory analysis of samples taken from the barren facility also indicated no evidence of CW or BW related materials in the submitted samples. In 2000, TABRC began the construction of a pilot Single Cell Protein (SCP) plant at Al Hamath, located at the same site as the Official Rest House, to conduct larger scale SCP work. The project for the pilot plant scale production of citric acid had been started using Aspergillus niger but the project could not be made to work.

  • The production method chosen was growth in submerged culture rather than in solid-state. Process equipment (e.g. mixing vessels, tanks, fermentation vessels) was commissioned and fabricated accordingly. The strain of A. niger used in this process proved unsuitable for use in submerged culture as the mycelium suffered damage under the continual stirring/agitation necessary in submerged culture. In short, the project could not be made to work. Having a collection of process equipment already in place at Al Hamath, it was seen as convenient to co-opt and reconfigure the equipment for SCP production.
  • A source indicated that the SCP process was set up in the northeastern corner of the larger of the two main buildings at Al Hamath. The remainder of the space in the larger hall was devoted to the production of fungal biopesticides (e.g. Paecilomyces, Trichoderma) grown in solid-state culture on milled corncobs. The fermentations were conducted in the rooms (offices) pre-existing in that building.

Al Tariq Company’s Habbaniyah I/Fallujah III Site

The Al Tariq Company produced castor oil by extraction from 1992 until 2002, using an Iraqi-designed and produced crushing mill purchased locally. Al Tariq officials complied with UNSCOM on the requirement that they burn the bean mash left over from production while UN inspectors remained in Iraq. This open pit burning of mash was no longer observed after the plant was reconstructed, post-Operation Desert Fox bombing, and went operational. The mash, which took days to burn and created significant smoke, was burned in pits near the Fallujah III facility. At one point, Al Tariq officials considered using the bean mash in animal feed, but this idea was never implemented.

  • Farmers at Al ‘Aziziyah claim their land was taken by Husayn Kamil in 1994 or 1995 to be utilized as dedicated lands for the growth of caster plants, the end user of which was exclusively the Al Tariq facility. The MIC reportedly worked in collaboration with both the State Company for Industrial Crops and the Ministry of Agriculture to plant “cover crops” –other crops such as wheat-in order to mask the growth of the castor plants. In 2001, an employee of the Al Tariq Facility named “Husayn” told an individual at the farm that the castor beans were being used by the Al Tariq Facility in order to “produce poisons that would kill humans.”
  • Historically this site has been of concern because the castor oil plant could have potentially been used in the first step, mainly the castor bean mash, in the production of the BW agent Ricin. Iraq stated several different ways in which the ricin in the mash was being inactivated; yet UNSCOM showed that active ricin could readily be isolated from the mash after the castor oil was removed.
  • During this time period, officials from Ibn-al-Baytar expressed an interest in purchasing castor oil from Al Tariq for use in pharmaceuticals. The Al Tariq facility’s oil was not competitively priced, however, and because it was extracted by solvents instead of cold pressing, Al Tariq’s oil was not considered to be “food grade”, or appropriate for medical/pharmaceutical uses. At one point, SDI purchased five tons of Al Tariq oil for pharmaceutical purposes, but upon sampling the oil, immediately deemed it as inappropriate for medical use and sent all of the castor oil back to Al Tariq. Because of these issues, Ibn-al-Baytar decided to procure castor beans directly from the same source as Al Tariq, the Company for Industrial Forests (CIF). After production ended in 2002, Al Tariq was left with unwanted castor oil, but no customers. The leftover castor oil was kept in barrels at Fallujah III.

During the work of the UN and ISG, a number of facilities have been identified as having carried out or have been assessed as capable of carrying out R&D on viruses. These facilities include the Al Kindi Company for Veterinary Vaccines and Drugs, the Al ‘Amiriyah Serum and Vaccine Institute, the Al Razi Research Center, the Al Dawrah Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccine plant (before 1996 when UNSCOM disabled the air handling system), Baghdad University College of Veterinary Medicine at Abu Ghurayb and Al Hakam before its destruction (also in 1996). Al Hakam and Al Dawrah FMDV facilities are described above.

Al Razi Center

ISG determined that the Al Razi Center is no longer suitable for research or production of any biological activity because of extensive looting. ISG has no information to suggest that Al Razi was actively involved in R&D of viral BW agents for the Iraqi BW program. An ISG visit to Al Razi found numerous vials of lyophilized bacteria and yeasts that were littering the site including: Vibrio cholerae, Salmonella typhi, Salmonella paratyphi, Clostridium difficile, Clostridium welchii, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Brucella melitensis, and Brucella abortus. In addition, numerous vials of lyophilized avian influenza were also noted.

Several burn piles consisting of burned documents, vials, chemicals, electronic media and small pieces of equipment where located around the building. The piles seemed to be an organized destruction effort given stir rods located with some of the piles.

An inventory of UNSCOM tagged equipment was conducted. Four pieces of dual-use laboratory equipment were noted missing.

ISG assesses that the research expertise available at the Al Razi center could potentially have been used to research viral BW agents.

  • Al Razi was established in 1992 under the direction of Saddam Husayn. Dr. Hazim ‘Ali, a senior personality related to the Iraqi viral BW program, and Athir Al Duri were responsible for setting up the facility with Dr. Hazim ‘Ali in charge of the virology department and Al Duri director of the bacteriology department.
  • The virology department at Al Razi was involved in work on Hepatitis and mumps diagnostic kits, using positive sera obtained from the Ministry of Health. The facility also had an animal house where they kept sheep, goats, rabbits and mice. No primates were seen by the source but monkey cages were seen in 1996 after a delivery from Al Muthanna.

Baghdad University, College of Veterinary Medicine, Abu Ghurayb

ISG found no information to suggest that the College of Veterinary Medicine, Baghdad University, played a role in the R&D phase of the viral BW program. ISG has uncovered no substantial connection between the BW program and the College of Veterinary Medicine.

  • The College of Veterinary Medicine was capable of viral research. The faculty at the College of Veterinary Medicine possess the requisite knowledge and skill to grow and genetically manipulate potential BW agents. Based on the faculty’s description of the equipment that was looted, the College had adequate resources to grow agents such as high-risk virus. However, the remaining equipment found in 2003 by the assessment team at the facility is inadequate to conduct any significant research or production of BW agents.

Al Kindi Company for Veterinary Vaccines and Drugs

All known UNSCOM tagged equipment at the Al Kindi Company for Veterinary Vaccines and Drugs was present at the site. The site is operating normally, although at a reduced level. A senior employee explained that they were still in the process of trying to reinstate the quality of their vaccines and had not yet developed elaborate plans for the future.

  • Prior to Desert Storm, the facility was believed to be involved in Iraq’s BW program. A foreign company supplied a complete vaccine production line in 1984 for the facility to produce “Co-Baghdad vaccine,” a mixture of veterinary important Clostridial species. It was most of this vaccine line that was acquired by Al Hakam and used at that facility prior to 1991. Presently the company is able to produce viral disease vaccines for poultry to include: Newcastle, fowl pox, and gumboro; and viral vaccines for livestock to include rinderpest, sheep pox and goat pox. Bacterial disease vaccines include: enterotoxaemia (sheep), hemorrhagic septicemia, blackleg (C. perfringens, cattle), anthrax (sheep). Al Kindi Company did not sustain any damage during OIF, and no looting had taken place, since the employees stayed in the buildings and guarded them. No seed cultures were lost, since the company has generators that supplied power to the refrigerators and freezers without interruption.
  • In April 1994, an UNSCOM Team found that the facility was the sole Iraqi producer of veterinary vaccines required to protect against animal viral, bacterial, and parasitic agents (including anthrax). However, a 1997 UNSCOM report indicated Al Kindi personnel had the expertise to run a BW production facility as well as apparent access to military significant microorganisms, and would have been able to easily convert veterinary vaccine production to production of human vaccines.

The Newcastle vaccine product lines at Al Kindi demonstrate an ability to scale up large quantity viral production. Al Kindi Company had the facilities that would enable mass production of smallpox virus in either cell culture or fertilized eggs, and in either liquid slurry or lyophilized form, however, no indication of intent to do so was found by ISG.

Role of Al ‘Amiriyah Serum and Vaccine Institute (ASVI) in Smallpox R&D

ISG has uncovered no evidence to support smallpox R&D at ASVI for possible use as an offensive BW agent. The ASVI is the only facility in Iraq acknowledged to be associated with smallpox, albeit with the smallpox vaccine. The Institute continued to manufacture a smallpox vaccine through to the early 1980s.

ISG discovered no indications of BW activity at the facility. All equipment and material observed appeared related to serum and vaccine storage, quality control and very limited organic production capability. An ISG assessment on the facility states that it is unlikely that ASVI was involved in suspicious BW-related activities other than possible temperature control storage. Laboratory results from samples taken from the site were negative for BW agent signatures.

  • ASVI produced limited quantities of bacterial and viral vaccines and diagnostic reagents and kits for human use. According to Hazim ‘Ali, head of the Iraqi viral BW program, any smallpox isolates would have been stored at either the ASVI or the Central Public Health Laboratory. The director of ASVI stated, in a recent interview, that ASVI produced three and half million doses of smallpox vaccine in 1980, a month after the start of the Iran-Iraq war, eight years after the last smallpox case in Iraq and the year it was declared eradicated in the world. The director stated that vaccine might have been for defense against an Iranian BW attack, but it is also possible that the vaccine could have been a defensive measure for anticipated Iraqi smallpox use against Iran.
  • From its inception, ASVI has not had the biosafety equipment, procedures or technical expertise to work with dangerous pathogens. Economic sanctions and import restrictions further impeded their ability to perform even basic research. In March 2003, the facility was extensively looted with reconstruction efforts at the facility focus on replacing air conditioning units, doors, windows and providing a consistent source of electricity. As of late August 2004, through its affiliation with a humanitarian organization, Kimadia State company for Marketing and Medical appliances, and the Iraqi Ministry of Health, the facility was able to import small amounts of vaccine an other reagents. These were to be stored and later distributed by the facility.
  • From 1975 to 1982, ASVI produced smallpox vaccine, utilizing the vaccinia strain; samples of the vaccine were cultured and collected from bovine calf skin. Production of smallpox vaccine was conducted under the auspices of the World Health Organization (WHO) from 1975 to 1977. The WHO vaccine was produced and stored in liquid form but between 1977 and 1980, ASVI also produced a powdered/lyophilized vaccinia product. In October 1980, ASVI requested Vaccinia seed stock from the WHO to produce more vaccine. The request was denied due to the disease having been eradicated, and the WHO ordered ASVI not to proceed with its vaccinia work but the Iraq Ministry of Health ordered it to produce the vaccine. By 1982, the viral research branch responsible for the smallpox vaccine, produced and subsequently stored, 3.5 million doses of the vaccine in liquid form. These samples were assessed to have a shelf life of three years. The remaining 750 grams of bulk smallpox vaccine preparation was stored in a powdered/lyophilized form. This preparation had a shelf life of 10 years.
  • The vaccine produced as by ASVI in response to the request from the Iraqi Ministry of Health was manufactured by strengthening some vaccine it had previously produced and stored. The strain identified as having been used was Lister. The material was strengthened by three times inoculating rabbit skin and then infecting calf bellies. Each calf belly yielded about 200,000 doses of the vaccine. The scientist responsible for conducting the work left ASVI in 1982 and there were no tests of vaccine efficacy, such as neutralizing antibodies, in humans in Iraq. The 750 grams of material were tested in 1986 and found to be nonviable. In 1992, the 3.5 million doses of vaccine were tested and determined to be nonviable also. It was recommended that the vaccine be destroyed but ISG has been unable to confirm or deny this claim.
  • In 1994, Iraq completed a WHO questionnaire regarding the reporting of smallpox vaccine production activities, vaccine stocks and seed virus strains. Their response indicated that ASVI maintained two smallpox vaccine seed vials that Iraq had obtained from the Netherlands before 1977 and 19 vials of Brucella antisera that had been produced in rabbits and mislabeled as vaccinia. In addition, a 1994 inventory submitted to the NMD listed the facility as possessing two vials of “smallpox seed No. Q1”. During meetings with UNMOVIC in December 2002 regarding the 19 antisera vials and the two seed stock vials, Antoine Al Bana took one of the 19 vials for analysis and an UNMOVIC inspector also took one. Al Bana determined that there was nothing viable in the vial that he analyzed.
  • Two vials of smallpox vaccine seed stock labeled “Rijks Instituut V.D. Volksgezondheid—10 ml seedvirus—L1 K2—Strain Elstree—Utrecht” were discovered at ASVI. These two large vials may be the seed vials referred to in the 1994 report to the NMD, however, SMEs note that the vials were markedly different in content and appearance. No locally produced vials labeled “Elstree” were discovered at ASVI. ISG is awaiting confirmation on the contents of these vials.
  • According to a DGS intelligence officer who provided security at Rihab’s laboratory at Al Salman and Al Hakam, an individual connected with ASVI in 1989 to 1990 had IIS connections and supported Rihab’s BW efforts at Al Hakam. The individual had frequent contact with Dr. Rihab beginning in 1990. Rihab made frequent visits to Al ‘Amiriyah Sera Vaccine Institute where she and the individual conducted unidentified BW related research. At ASVI, the individual source had access to special laboratories and conducted unspecified genetic research. The DGS officer stated that the source helped Rihab in her work. The DGS intelligence officer also stated that the source was an IIS officer and that his work was related to the IIS. When asked how he knew this he stated that Rihab was under constant surveillance by the IIS and that he learned the source’s affiliation from other IIS officers. The individual left ASVI in 1991 to work at Baghdad University.
  • All buildings, which were found to be heavily looted during April and May 2003, are now generally restored with equipment replenishment in progress. The UN tagged and untagged dual-use equipment found and the site were consistent with the declared purpose of the site.

State Company for Drug Industries and Medical Appliances

ISG exploitation of Samarra Drug Insustries’ (SDI) location revealed industrial scale utilities and numerous, dual-use jacketed vessels, some of which had not been declared to the UN. ISG found no evidence that equipment at Samarra had been modified to serve as fermentors for BW production. ISG assesses, however, that the staff possessed the required expertise for bulk BW agent production and that Samarra potentially would have been capable of limited breakout production of BW agent within one month prior to OIF.

SDI belongs to the State Company for Drug Industries and Medical Appliances, which, in turn, is part of the Ministry of Industry and Materials (MIM) and under its direction and control. The main activities of the site are R&D and production and formulation of pharmaceutical products. A technical group within MIM provides guidance and direction for pharmaceutical compounds to be researched at SDI. Staff protected the plant post OIF and hence minimal looting took place.

  • The facility appears to be producing its full product line except for antibiotics.
  • Site buildings contain numerous jacketed process tanks ranging in capacity from 100–10,000 liters together with ancillary equipment such as filter presses, autoclaves and bio-safety cabinets. (Figures 4, 5, and 6)
  • All equipment was assessed to be in good working condition.
  • ISG judges that the 10,000-liter industrial scale tanks at Samarra are compatible with their declared use—the manufacture of pharmaceuticals—and that they would require considerable modification to function as fermentors for BW production. However, ISG also judges the 3,000-liter and possibly some or all of the 1,000-liter stirred, jacketed vessels could be pressed into service for BW production within one month.
  • An ISG team was reluctantly admitted to a production hall containing tiers of linked, jacketed, stainless steel vessels, of Soviet origin, which were piped to receive steam. Some of these vessels were fitted with aeration rings and glass viewing ports but no stirrers/agitators were evident.(Figure 7) None of these vessels had been declared to the UN.
  • The plant general manager asserted that these vessels were for solvent extraction of natural oils from plants, and that they were last used in 1975-76. ISG judges the vessels have a potential dual-use capability and that they could be adapted to function as fermentors for production of BW agents.
  • High quality industrial scale steam and water utilities were available on site.(Figure 8)

Laboratories of the Iraqi Intelligence Service

ISG interviewed several sources and identified several suspect clandestine laboratories that reportedly supported biologically related research. ISG has not been able to determine whether these laboratories were part of a clandestine BW effort.

The tactic of using IIS and covert laboratories has historical precedence dating back to the programs origins in the 1970s. Reverting to this practice would minimize the evidence available to inspectors. It would also leave the known and acknowledged BW workers free to deal with the UN inspection regime. However, it would require another cadre of scientists other than ones known to the UN to conduct this kind of research. The discovery of multiple clandestine laboratories after OIF lends some credence to this assessment.

ISG found a possible DGS laboratory in Baghdad that contained a variety of chemicals but no laboratory equipment. Residents in the building alleged that the laboratory was a biological one. The investigating team found several DGS administrative documents, some of which were from employees requesting approval for danger pay for their hazardous work with biological and radioactive materials. This warehouse complex, adjacent to the 5-story IIS laboratory (site 5), was reported by a former mid-level IIS chemist to be a storage facility for IIS chemicals and equipment. A separate former IIS officer indicated this was a former IIS training facility and hide site; materials were reportedly moved from the IIS safe house (site 2) to this warehouse in the beginning of 2003 to avoid discovery by UN inspectors.

  • During the first exploitation in April 2003, the exploitation team found large quantities of liquid and dry chemicals, equipment, documents, and other materials—some of which were partially destroyed. A visit to the site in July revealed a completely looted warehouse complex with no remaining evidence of chemicals, equipment, or documentation. A former IIS officer indicated that other IIS officers returned to the site in late April to destroy the remaining materials.
  • Though not BW, ISG learned that the Chemical Preparation Division of IIS’s M16 Directorate of Criminology used this approach for lethal chemical research. The IIS used a succession of four clandestine laboratories in At Taji and Baghdad between 1996 and 2003 to research and develop chemicals. It also included testing of chemicals on small animals like mice, rabbits and rats.
  • There is information that suggests that up to 5 IIS laboratories operated in the greater Baghdad area at various times up until OIF.
  • Additional reporting, though unconfirmed, indicates that the M16 Division also conducted BW related research in two covert laboratories as well. In the early 1990s, Saddam tasked the IIS to do small-scale BW work in covert laboratories concealed within legitimate facilities. Further unconfirmed reports indicated the IIS conducted BW and CW experiments and stored WMD precursor materials in residences and warehouse around Baghdad through April 2003.
  • Information collected at the time of OIF led to the discovery of assorted laboratory equipment purportedly used by a suspect BW scientist on the Black List at a Mosque in Baghdad.

An ISG team at the Baghdad Central Public Health laboratory identified a clandestine laboratory in the summer of 2003. According to an employee of the laboratory, the IIS operated a laboratory at that location for several years. In advance of a 1998 UNSCOM inspection, secret documents were removed and stored at the Director’s house. In December of 2002, the laboratory was emptied of all equipment and documents.


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