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Last Updated: Monday, 8 November, 2004, 17:43 GMT
Eyewitness: Taking cover in Falluja
Falluja resident leaving the city on Monday
Most of Falluja's population has fled the city
US and Iraqi national guard forces have launched the long-awaited assault on the Iraqi city of Falluja.

The BBC News website spoke by phone to Fadhil Badrani, an Iraqi journalist and resident of Falluja who reports regularly for Reuters and BBC World Service in Arabic.

We are publishing his and other eyewitness accounts from the city in order to provide the fullest possible range of perspectives from those who are there:

For people in the city, life has become even more extreme.

Food is in short supply and the shops are all closed in anticipation of the looming attack.

Electricity is cut off because of damage to the main power station from the bombardment. The water supply has been cut off too. The roads are now heavily cratered.

Click below for a satellite image of Falluja

People, particularly children and women, tend to stay at home, fearing being mistaken for a military target.

Doctors say medical supplies at the main hospital, which has been in American hands since Sunday, are low.

Most of the city's population has left, some for other parts of Iraq, others, I hear have left the country altogether for neighbouring Arab counties.

Economic life here has been way down since the first siege last April.

This has meant that most people are suffering desperate financial difficulties and many are living in Baghdad with family.

Rents in Baghdad have shot up, partly because of refugees from Falluja.

Other interviews with Fadhil Badrani:

Falluja residents give eyewitness account of battle



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