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100,000 Civilians Dead In Iraq War . We really helped them out, didn’t we Mr. President? (SkyNews)

Around 100,000 Iraqis have been killed in violence since the US-led invasion last year, according to a new report.American public health experts said the high death rate was partly due to US air strikes on towns and cities. “Making conservative assumptions, we think that about 100,000 excess deaths have happened,” said Les Roberts of the Bloomberg School of Public Health, in a report published by The Lancet medical journal.

“The use of air power in areas with lots of civilians appears to be killing a lot of women and children.”

Mortality was already high in Iraq before the war because of United Nations sanctions blocking food and medical imports, but the researchers described what they found as “shocking”.

Previous estimates based on think tank and media sources put the Iraqi civilian death toll at up to 16,000.

The researchers blamed air strikes for many of the deaths.

“What we have evidence of is the use of air power in populated urban areas and the bad consequences of it,” Roberts said.

Gilbert Burnham, who collaborated on the research, said U.S. military action in Iraq was “very bad for Iraqi civilians”.

“We were not expecting the level of deaths from violence that we found in this study and we hope this will lead to some serious discussions of how military and political aims can be achieved in a way that is not so detrimental to civilians,” he said.

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Pam Spaulding

Pam Spaulding