In Serbia, after the 1999 bombings, the incidence rate of various types of cancer has only increased, especially in regions where NATO aviation had used depleted uranium bombs.
It is twenty years of institutional neglect to deal with the increase in cancer cases, but at the beginning of the second half of the year, a special commission was set up which may prove that Serbs suffer from brain cancer, unexplained skin diseases and malignant tumors that did not arise by chance.
“In Vranje, of the 40 people who had direct contact with the soil contaminated by uranium, 10 have died and most of the deaths were caused by malignant tumors. Many people who have been in the infected areas have skin problems such as erythema and ulcerative eruptions of unknown aetiology,” said the head of the NATO Bombings Investigative Commission, Darko Laketic.
He added that in the village of Borovac, hit by NATO airstrikes with depleted uranium bombs, three of the 300 inhabitants, or 1% of the population, suffer from brain cancer. According to Darko Laketic, today’s main goal is to analyze cause-effect relationships and classify medical reports for “prevention, detection and treatment of cancer in the early stages in the required regions.”
In the list of 185 countries, Serbia occupies the 18th position with 307.9 malignant tumors detected in 100,000 inhabitants. In 1999, before the NATO bombings in Serbia, 9,000 to 12,000 people died of cancer each year, then, according to information from 2014, the number of deaths doubled to 22,000, and the number of newly diagnosed cancer patients reached 40,000.
Some scientists believe that this situation is attributed to the use of depleted uranium by NATO and point to the prevalence of leukemia and lymphoma in Serbia, the types of cancerous tumors most sensitive to ionizing radiation. Other experts note that there is no evidence of a relationship between increased incidence and depleted uranium, as the number of cancer cases is increasing nationwide, and depleted uranium is limited in scope. The first report of the Serbian commission dedicated to the consequences of NATO bombings will be published in 2020.