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Last Updated: Wednesday, 8 December, 2004, 01:05 GMT
Text of letter to Tony Blair
Here is the text of the letter to Tony Blair urging a proper count of civilian casualties in Iraq.

Dear prime minister,

The medical journal The Lancet recently published a study that estimates the post-invasion Iraqi death toll at 98,000.

The same study reported that the risk of death from violence among Iraqis is vastly higher than it was before the war began.

You have rejected these findings, but offer no comparable assessment of your own.

As you know, your government is obliged under international humanitarian law to protect the civilian population during military operations in Iraq, and you have consistently promised to do so.

However, without counting the dead and injured, no one can know whether Britain and its Coalition partners are meeting these obligations.

We therefore urge you immediately to commission a comprehensive, independent inquiry to determine with the greatest possible accuracy how many Iraqis have died or been injured since March 2003 - and the cause of those casualties.

The inquiry should be independent of government, conducted according to accepted scientific methods and subjected to peer review so that all parties can be confident of the findings.

It should report regularly to Parliament and the public for as long as British forces remain in Iraq.

Yours sincerely,

Air Marshal the Lord Garden KCB, Visiting Professor, Centre for Defence Studies, King's College London.

The Rt Hon the Lord Rea

General Sir Hugh Beach GBE KCB MC, former Master General of the Ordnance British Army

Sir Brian Barder, former British Ambassador to Ethiopia, Poland and the Republic of Bénin, and British High Commissioner in Nigeria and Australia

Sir Stephen Egerton, former Ambassador to Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Italy

Robin Kealy, HM Diplomatic Service (retired) ambassador to Tunisia 2001-2004

Oliver Miles, former Ambassador to Libya, Luxembourg and Greece

Sir David Ratford, Deputy Political Director, FCO 1987-90, Ambassador to Norway 1990-94

Lord Bishop of Coventry, Rt Revd Colin Bennetts, chairman of the Church of England's Partnership for World Mission

Iqbal Sacranie, secretary general Muslim Council of Britain

Dr Daud Abdullah, assistant secretary general Muslim Council of Britain

Dr Rosemary Hollis

Elizabeth Wilmshurst

Bianca Jagger, human rights campaigner Council of Europe Goodwill Ambassador

Tony Fletcher, PhD president International Society for Environmental Epidemiology 2004-5, Public and Environmental Health Research Unit, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Professor Martin McKee, European Centre on Health of Societies in Transition, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Professor James McEwen, Emeritus Professor in Public Health University of Glasgow

Klim McPherson, FFPH FMedSci, visiting professor of Public Health Epidemiology, Churchill Hospital, Oxford

Jerry Morris, Emeritus Professor of Public Health, Public & Environmental Health Research Unit, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Ian Roberts, professor of Epidemiology and Public Heath, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Dr Alex Scott-Samuel, senior lecturer in Public Health, University of Liverpool

Gill Walt, professor of International Health Policy, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Eileen O'Keefe, senior lecturer in Philosophy & Health Policy, London Metropolitan University

Walter Armbrust, director, Middle East Centre, St. Antony's College Oxford

Alex Danchev, professor of International Relations, University of Nottingham

Dr Eric Herring, senior lecturer in International Politics, University of Bristol

Dr Clive Jones, Institute for Politics and International Studies, University of Leeds

Professor Colin McInnes, director, Centre for Health and International Relations, University of Wales Aberystwyth

Turi Munthe, head of Middle East & North Africa Programme, Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies

Dr Gerd Nonneman, reader in International Relations & Middle East Politics, Lancaster University

Martin Shaw, professor of International Relations & Politics, University of Sussex

Avi Shlaim, professor of International Relations, St Antony's College Oxford

Paul Williams, lecturer in Security Studies, University of Birmingham.

Dr Eddie Coyle, consultant in Public Health Medicine, Wales Centre for Health, Velindre NHS Trust, NHS Wales

Philip Leach, senior lecturer in Law, London Metropolitan University

Jonathan Rosenhead, Emeritus Professor of Operational Research, London School of Economics

Professor John O'Keefe, FRS, FAMS, University College London

Professor Tim Valentine, Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths College

Richard Norman, professor of Moral Philosophy, University of Kent

Dr Mary Midgley, Moral Philosopher

Dr Susie Orbach, psychotherapist and writer, visiting professor, London School of Economics

Harold Pinter, writer

Linda Grant, writer

Gillian Slovo, writer

Bishop of Oxford Richard Harries

Labour peer Baroness Helena Kennedy QC

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