Newsletter 2003

Issue number 9 Autumn 2003

May Al-Daftari

In 2003, Iraq witnessed a devastating war, change of regime and occupation by coalition forces. The health care system has been one of the worst affected sectors. The war, and the escalation of violence that followed, led to unprecedented looting and deprived hospitals of their most basic equipment. To this day, many hospitals do not function properly. Medical supplies, already scarce before the war, have been depleted. The inflow of new supplies remains sporadic. Moreover, many humanitarian agencies have had to leave or reduce their staff.

Scores of people have died, been injured or maimed as a result of the war and the continuing violence. Outbreaks of disease, declining health standards and the pollution of the environment, have aggravated health problems and heightened the Iraqi people's need for urgent treatment. Children and women are the most affected. Mortality rates amongst pregnant women and those in labour are three times higher than the pre-war period.

Exposure to radioactive material used in the war has led to unusually high numbers of birth defects. Unattended weapons and scattered bomblets have injured many children. An estimated 1000 children have been injured or have died as a result of accidents involving unexploded ordinances. The trauma of war and violence has greatly affected children.

UNICEF estimates 500,000 children are in need of psychological treatment. Moreover, acute malnutrition and the spread of contagious diseases pose significant health problems for the under fives. Unfortunately, as a result of dire hospital conditions and a shattered health system, many sick and injured cannot get basic treatment. Complicated surgeries and psychological help are very scarce.

MAIC has been overwhelmed by the colossal needs of hospitals during those critical times. We did our utmost to provide them with their most urgent medical supplies. The total value of our medical aid in 2003 stands at £329,931. Further medical aid, valued at £150,000, is earmarked to purchase supplies for delivery at the beginning of 2004.

I am most grateful to all MAIC supporters who have made our aid possible. It is indeed gratifying to know that 53 fundraising activities benefiting MAIC were organised by different groups and individuals nationwide. I would like to express my sincerest thanks and appreciation to all of them.

Last but not least, my warmest thanks go to MAIC members in London, Baghdad and Jordan for their passion and commitment in helping Iraqi children.

Wishing you all a Happy and Peaceful New Year.


• On 11 June 2003, MAIC launched the Emergency War Relief Fund 'EWRF' at the Royal College of Physicians in London. Speakers included Dr. Karol Sikora, professor of Cancer Medicine at the Imperial College, Mr. Peter Troy, the Humanitarian Programme Manager at the UK Department for International Development, and Ms. Rym Brahimi, Middle East Correspondent at CNN. Funds collected totalled £51,000. The event allowed MAIC to raise its media profile. Several Board and Events Committee members had interviews with the press in which they discussed the situation and the needs of hospitals in Iraq.

• On 7 November 2003, MAIC held an Iftar at Noura restaurant. The event included a raffle and bazaar and generated £23,000.

• Due to the onset of the war, MAIC's annual fundraising dinner was postponed. However, fundraising events nationwide have helped compensate.

December 2002 - December 2003

Table 1:
Consignment delivered to Basra airport on 2 May 2003*

Total Value

Receiving Hospitals in Iraq
Anti-Cancer Drugs
Respiratory Medicines
Glucose Infusion, Protien Powder, Baby & Soya Milk, SMA High Energy Drink, Wheelchairs & Crutches.
Basra Paediatric Hospital, Basra
Al-Mansour Paediatric Teaching Hospital, Baghdad
Kadisiya General Hospital, Paediatric Section, Baghdad
Kerbala Children's Hospital, Kerbala
Central Paediatric Teaching Hospital, Baghdad

The above items were sponsored through the generosity of the following donors: Dr. Maghrabi, Latifa Kosta, Mr & Mrs Ahmed Asseh, May Al-Daftari, Mustafa Al-Rawi, Rev'd Stephenson, Rabab Sammekieh, Dina Nassar, Khetam Al-Obaeidi, Constance Burrough, R. Begum, Merle D'Souza, Gordon Winter, Welwyn Garden City Quakers, Farah Alaghband, John Dansie, Portsmouth Cathedral, Mr. Wright, Najah Tahir, Zinat Al-Asaad, Lord Gilmour, Najla Hamadeh, Emma Shakle, Martin Wyatt, St.Gregory's 'A Desire for Peace', Oxford University Islamic Society, Jake Voelcker, Sundays event, Axminster United Reformed Church, Layla Hoffman, Dr. & Mrs M Farrow, Mr. & Mrs M Kalo, Dr. Victor Chua, Omaya Lozi, Lody Moukarzel, Mr & Mrs Azmudeh, Youmna Achour, Dania Sakka, Professor Soad Tabaqchali, Raya Jallad, Fatima Maleki, David Sambar, Hayatt Sanbar, Amel Hallak, Mona Takla, Mrs Chamsi Pasha, Reem Jallad, Nejat Anabtawi, Susan Hamza, Mr & Mrs A Khan, Haissam El-Rifai, Rima Shour, CAF donors, standing order donors as well as various generous donors during fundraising events.

Table 2:
Consignment of medical supplies, delivered on 19th August 2003

Total Value

Receiving Hospitals in Iraq
£128,790.29 Anti-Cancer drugs
Respiratory Medicines
Aantibiotics, steroids
Surgical Items,
Baby & Soya Milk,
WHO Medical Kits
Basra Paediatric Hospital, Basra
Hilla Hospital, Hilla
Al-Mansour Paediatric Teaching Hospital, Baghdad
Ibn Baladi Hospital, Baghdad
Kerbala Children's Hospital, Kerbala
Central Paediatric Teaching
Hospital, Baghdad
Mosul Paediatric Teaching
Hospital, Mosul
Second hand British Medical Journals (BMJ)*
Al-Mansour Paediatric
Teaching Hospital, Baghdad
* The BMJ were generously donated by Dr. Mercy Heatley, Dr. Peter Fisher and Dr. Amna S.Murad.

The above items were sponsored through the generosity of the following donors: Karim Rida Said Foundation, The Tides Foundation, The Ousseimi Foundation, Suzanne Booth, Maryam Eisler, Ali Jaidah, Latifa Kosta, Arab Women's Association, Maysa Ibrahim, Doha Sakka, Maha Kaddouri, May Al-Daftari, Ali Al-Daftari, Ramzi Dalloul, Jan Burgess, Sabah Ayoub, Leila Al-Qattan, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, Qatar Embassy, H.E Nasser Khalifa, Ahmed Tayeb, Mr & Mrs H.R. Farman-Farmaian, Affat Zalt, Janet Cross, Aspect Capital Ltd, Mr & Mrs Jihad Tabbara, Vicky LeConte, Mr & Mrs Munir Atalla, Mr & Mrs Hanna, Omaya Lozi, Basil Abbou, Imad Habba, Sirine Idilby, Rema Azem, V Omari, Mr & Mrs Y Bouhara, Mr & Mrs H. Khalifa, St. Gregory's Choral Orchestra, Chipping Campden School, Young Enterprise Scotland, William Sennoke Lodge, Somer Salty, Walid Azram, Khetam Al-Obeidi, Ensemble Music Productions, Better Living Property, Roehampton University of Surrey, A Khokhar, The Bem Family, Layla Hoffman, M Tabbara, Mr & Mrs J Masera, Mr. J Maynard, Martin Wyatt, Dr. H Abul-Eis, F Hayes, St. Chad's Church, Julian Gallant, C Henry, E Dickenson, I Morillo, Sylvia Edwards, Jane Stafford, Professor Roy Moffett, Mr. Zaccariah, P Dean, Mrs Maidment, Ian Milton, Kate Target, Professor Robert Mabro, Mona Takla, Meline Marmarchi, The Royal College of Paediatrics, Sir Alan Urwick, George Asseily, Sir Terence Clark, CAF donors, standing order donors as well as various generous donors during fundraising events.


The shipment was funded through the MAIC mainstream account and sent to Iraq courtesy of Virgin Atlantic Airways.

MAIC tried to send the shipment to Iraq prior to the war. However, because of a three and a half month delay in receiving UN approvals, the shipment was not sent.

At the end of April 2003, MAIC was contacted by Durbin Plc, a medical distribution company which provides us with most of our medical supplies. Durbin informed us that Virgin was preparing an emergency humanitarian flight to Iraq and would be prepared to take the MAIC shipment, which was stored at the Durbin warehouse. The shipment, valued at £201,140.98 was pre-assigned to five paediatric hospitals. The consignment included medicines such as antibiotics and cancer drugs, surgical equipment, wheelchairs, soya and baby milk.

Watermark, the company involved in coordinating humanitarian supplies for the Virgin flight, wrote to MAIC confirming that coalition forces would deliver the shipment to the nominated hospitals. After receiving Watermark's assurances, MAIC agreed to send its supplies with the Virgin flight, which landed in Basra on 2 May 2003.

MAIC received written confirmation from Colonel John Graham, the Chief Medical Officer for the British Army, of the receipt of MAIC's supplies and promised their safe and rapid distribution to the assigned hospitals. However, several weeks passed with no further news on the delivery of our shipment. MAIC repeatedly wrote to Colonel Graham enquiring about the distribution of the medicines which are heat sensitive and would be destroyed if incorrectly stored.

These medical supplies were destined to go to five hospitals in Iraq, one in Basra and four in Baghdad. Basra hospital received less than half its supplies on 2 May 2003. The other hospitals did not receive supplies until 26 June, 2003 with significant quantities missing.
MAIC has written correspondences from hospitals in Iraq detailing the missing items, totalling in value £98,784.49.

MAIC has recently written to high-ranking British officials in London in this regard, and is seeking compensation from the British Government for the loss of its medicines and equipment. The Charity will continue to press the matter with the relevant authorities.


• Forthcoming Shipment: This shipment will consist of four Drager incubators and four resuscitators. The total value of the shipment, including transport, is 75,167.35 Euros. MAIC would like to thank Vitol Services Limited for sponsoring three incubators and three resuscitators and the Ousseimi Foundation for sponsoring one incubator and one resuscitator. The equipment will be equally divided between the Al Mansour Paediatric Teaching Hospital, Medical City, Baghdad and the Central Paediatric Teaching Hospital, Baghdad.

• MAIC was contacted by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health with an offer to train 10 doctors from Iraq starting in April 2004. The College would pay for the one-month fellowship, including flights, training and accommodation. MAIC's team of doctors in Iraq have distributed the fellowship application among doctors throughout Iraq. Successful applicants will be notified at the end of December, 2003.


Hospitals throughout Iraq continue to suffer severe shortages of basic medical supplies and equipment. Poor sanitary conditions, the lack of water and electricity have led to a sharp rise in diseases such as typhoid, cholera and even bubonic plague. Danger to Iraqi citizens, especially children, lurks in the form of unexploded land mines and rockets. The following are examples of health and hospital conditions:

• The Iraq Body Count (IBC), an Anglo-American research group estimates the number of civilian deaths from the start of the war to 20 October at 7,757 to 9,565. The number of civilian injuries is placed three times higher than the number of deaths. IBC estimates at least 20,000 civilian have been injured since the start of the war until July.

• The mortality rate for pregnant women and women in labour has risen threefold. According to a recent study, there are 310 deaths per 100,000 pregnant women.

• The effects of the war and the continuing climate of fear in Iraq have had serious psychological effects on children. Many are thought to suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Through its contacts at the Iraqi Ministry of Health, MAIC has learned that there are no child psychiatrists in Iraq. Prior to the war, UNICEF had estimated that 500,000 children were in need of psychiatric care.

• Hospitals are short of the most basic supplies. Prior to the 2003 war, the Centre for Heart Disease performed three to five operations per day. That number has since dropped to one or two operations a week in the post-war period.

• The Centre for Heart Disease is in dire need of basic medical supplies such as oxygen cylinders and surgical items i.e.: cannulae, butterfly needles, exchange and transfusion sets.

• Paediatric hospitals are in desperate need of incubators, resuscitation trolleys and mucus extractors, to name only a few items.

• The Spinal Chord Injuries Centre located next door to the UN suffered severe damage resulting from the bombing of the UN building. The Centre has 700 handicapped patients and has lost a large amount of equipment. They have approached MAIC to provide them with 25 adult wheelchairs and five children's wheelchairs.

• Explosive Remnants of War (ERW), particularly cluster bomblets have injured around 1,000 Iraqi children according to a recent briefing by UNICEF. The ongoing damage to children and adults from the ERW is an ongoing problem as clearance is a slow and dangerous process requiring substantial funding and trained personnel.


MAIC wishes to thank all the foundations, organisations, companies, fundraisers and individuals who have so generously donated to the charity and to state how much we sincerely value their support. We extend our appreciation to the following list of organisers who have held fundraising events since January 2003:

Reverend John Stephenson of St. Chad's Church in East Herrington Sunderland for continuing to actively raise funds for MAIC.

The Oxford University Islamic Society for donating their general collection to MAIC.

The Durham Diocesan Board for raising funds.

The Paston School Pupils for generously raising funds.

St.Gregory's Choral Society and Orchestra for raising funds through a concert in April.

Dr. Victor Chua for holding a party which raised funds for MAIC.

Margaret and Mike Wright for raising funds by posting letters in their neighbourhood asking for donations for MAIC.

The Speyside High School for raising funds through the Young Enterprise

Scotland Programme by setting up their own mini enterprise, and through the sale of calendars for charity, some of which was given to MAIC.

The Nottingham Friends of the Iraqi People for raising awareness and funds.

Chipping Campden School for raising funds.

Susan Panahizadi-Booth and Maryam Homayoun-Eisler for holding a fundraising tea party at Blakes hotel in London in May.

Mr. and Mrs. Wasif Haroun for asking friends to donate to MAIC instead of buying gifts for Mr. Haroun's birthday.

Mrs. Sylvia Edwards for kindly donating a percentage from the sale of her paintings and book to MAIC during an exhibition of her paintings in May.

Julian Gallant from Ensemble Productions Ltd for holding a concert in May and donating a percentage of proceeds to MAIC.

The Arab Women's Association for holding a lunch hosted by Mrs. Leila Qattan and giving MAIC 60% of the proceeds.

Jane Stafford and all the children for creating a card with their picture to raise money for the children of Iraq.

The Cundall Manor School in York for raising money from a garden party held for an army sergeant on his way to Iraq.

The Heart of Aylsham community for raising funds through concerts, a raffle and donations.

The Brecknock Peace and Justice Group for holding a concert for the children of Iraq and donating part of the proceeds to MAIC.

Ian Milton for his active fundraising at the Brecknock Peace and Justice Group, as well as for donating proceeds from a stall sale.

The Hunter's Bar Against War and its organiser Jan Burgess for generously donating.

Professor Roy Moffet for asking friends for donations to MAIC in lieu of gifts at his retirement reception.

The Women's Council for their generous donation to the Emergency War Relief Fund.

The Craddocks for generously donating to MAIC in memory of Keith England.

The Old Palace School of John Whitgift, the children and the organisers, Miss Katie Neale and Miss Caroline Giffs, for kindly raising funds for MAIC.

The family of Janet Ursula Cross for very kindly donating to MAIC in her memory. MAIC would like to express our deepest condolences.

Sofia Tierney for asking friends to donate, instead of buying her gifts for her 7th birthday. Thank you Sofia, MAIC's youngest fund raiser!

Mr & Mrs Abdullah Ismail for sponsoring MAIC's fundraising Iftar in November, and to all contributors to the event.

Maysa Ibrahim for substantial funds raised on her birthday, in place of gifts.

Grant Wakefield for proceeds from his CD "The Fire This Time."

Coventry Building Society and Three Spires Round Table for donations raised through the Coventry Fun Run.

Mr Humphries and UK Civil Servants working at the CPA in Baghdad for donations raised through a pub quiz at the Al Rasheed Hotel.

St. Chad's Church for continuously raising funds for MAIC since their Christmas appeal in 2002.

Mr Boothroyd and congregation of Welcombe Church for raising funds through their quarterly collection.

Ian Godfrey and organisers of Health and Harmony Festival for donations raised from the North Devon community.

Society of Friends in Hertfordshire for proceeds raised from a luncheon.

Elizabeth Baker and Welwyn Garden City Quakers for proceeds from a luncheon.

Dr. Ismah Quasim & Dr. Malcolm Daniel for asking friends to send their contributions to MAIC instead of wedding gifts.

Hasina Talukdar for funds raised through a sponsored silence.

Ian Saunders for his sponsored walk of the West Highland Way.

Class L5JC at Loughborough High School for their kind fundraising initiative.

Staff and students at St. Michael's College for donations from their Annual Charity Day.

Kate Target for raising funds for MAIC through the sale of hand-painted T-shirts.

Christine Smith and The Rotary Club for organising a "Pedal push" fundraising event in High Wycombe.

Hood Hood Books for proceeds from a book sale held during MAIC's Iftar.

Talia Tabbara and Charlotte Kassir for painting and selling stones on the beach in the summer.

Pam Hutchins & John Haywood for asking friends to contribute to MAIC instead of purchasing wedding gifts.

Richard Jones, Gilad Atzmon, The Orient House Ensemble and Welsh Writers Against War for Benefit Jazz Concert in Swansea in aid of MAIC.

Roger Merenyi for fundraising through a sponsored seven-day fast.

Sensible Music Productions Ltd. for donating 10% of ticket sales at Ilham Al Madfai's concert.

Caroline Lees for promised donation of proceeds from her art exhibition in November 2003.

The HOPE Foundation for raising funds for MAIC through their campaign launch in April 2003; and for nominating MAIC to receive 10% of ticket sales and all profits from HOPE's fundraising Gala event, which was held at the Royal Albert Hall on 26 September 2003. Proceeds from the event are still pending.


Professor Edward W. Said
1 November, 1935 - 25 September, 2003
The loss of Edward Said was felt worldwide. His achievements in a multitude of fields including politics, history, music and literature knew no bounds. MAIC mourns the loss of Edward as one of this century's greatest and most outspoken thinkers as well as a valued Honorary Member of our charity. We would like to extend our deepest condolences to his family.

Dr Amna Sabri Murad
31 December, 1923 - 17 July, 2003
Dr Murad was a wonderful MAIC supporter. During her long illness, she continuously supported MAIC by donating her time and effort, writing to members of Parliament and regularly supplying us with copies of the British Medical Journal (BMJ). The journals were then sent on to doctors in Iraq. MAIC will miss her dearly.


As MAIC's humanitarian projects expand, the Board of Directors has decided that there is a real need to open a small, single staff office in Baghdad which would liaise with the MAIC office in London and with hospitals and doctors throughout Iraq. In coordination with MAIC's team of doctors in Iraq, the staff member would also follow up on the delivery of medical supplies to hospitals.

MAIC is expanding its humanitarian activities to meet growing hospital needs in the aftermath of the war. The following are examples of projects MAIC hopes to deliver in 2004:

We will continue to donate reagents and medical supplies that allow the proper functioning of blood gas analysers and Paediatric Intensive Care Units previously donated by MAIC.

We will continue to supply surgical items and medicines, including antibiotics and cancer treatment drugs, to paediatric hospitals. The rate of cancer cure from leukaemia stands at 9 out of 10 cases in the West. In Iraq it is at one out of 10 due to the shortage of cancer medicines.

MAIC was approached by two child psychiatrists working with the Iraqi Ministry of Health about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). We have put them in touch with Dr. Jack Piachaud from Medact ( MAIC is looking for sponsors to donate funds to train one or two Iraqi child psychiatrists in the UK.

MAIC will donate 30 wheelchairs and 60 pairs of crutches to the Centre for Spinal Chord Injuries in Iraq. One wheelchair costs £190. Crutches cost £20.40.


Board of Governors
Mrs Mazin Al-Daftari- Trustee & Chairman
Mrs Yassine Bouhara
Mr Hani Dajani - Trustee
Mrs H.R. Farman-Farmaian
Mr Hassan Haddad M.D.
Mrs Aboudi Kosta
Mrs Ali Khan
Mr Robert Mabro CBE - Trustee
Mr Sabah Mahmoud - Trustee & Treasurer
Mrs Charles Riachy - Trustee
Mrs David Sambar
Mrs Fatima Sheikh Khazaal - Trustee
Mr Bassam Zako
Mrs May Zako

Honorary Members
Mrs Wajih Al-Kaylani
Mrs Mashal Al-Nawab
Lady Beaumont
Prince Sixte de Bourbon-Parme
Prince de Chimay
Mr Nezar Haba M.D.
Mrs Imad Habba
Mrs Abdullah Ismail
Mr Bruce Mathalone M.D.
Mr Abdul Karim Moudaris
Dr Raghdah Shukri M.D.
Mrs Hassan Smadi
Mrs Nezhat Tayeb
Lady Tooley
Mr Graham Walker M.D.

Medical Team in Iraq
Mr Jawad Khadem Al-Ali M.D.
Dr Ihasan Al-Bahrani M.D.
Mr Khalid Al-Obaydi M.D.
Dr Adel Al-Rawi M.D.
Dr Omar Al-Yaqubi M.D.
Dr Hussam Charmougli M.D.
Dr Hussain Malik M.D.

Jordanian Liaison Committee
Dr Zafer Al-Kayyali M.D.
Mrs Mounir Attalah
Dr Salwan Baban M.D.
Dr Hala Fattah
Dr Junaid Mahmoud M.D.
Dr Layla Sharaf
Mrs Hasan Shukri

Support Committee
Mrs Rula Al-Chorbachi
Ms Maya Askari
Mr Taymoor Marmarchi
Ms Sabia Mayassi
Ms Suha Najjar
Mrs Sara Tayeb Khalifa


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