British Tribunal Recognizes Gulf War Syndrome
Date: Thursday, November 03 2005
British tribunal recognises Gulf War Syndrome
AFP Tue Nov 1, 10:57 AM ET
LONDON (AFP) - A British tribunal has recognised for the first time that a former soldier was suffering from Gulf War Syndrome and should receive an invalidity pension.
"This is a landmark ruling. It is the definitive case on Gulf War Syndrome to date," said Mark McGhee, the soldier's lawyer.
"This is going to have massive implications for hundreds of Gulf War
veterans, who clearly suffer from Gulf War syndrome."
The army disputes the term "Gulf War Syndrome", an umbrella term for a
number of illnesses, some serious, which have affected servicemen returning from Operation Desert Storm in 1991 to liberate Kuwait from Iraqi troops.
The Pensions Appeal Tribunal, which hears appeals from veterans who have had their claims for war pensions rejected, found that "veterans of the Gulf War later developed an excess of symptomatic ill health over and above that expected in the normal course of events".
They added: "The term Gulf War Syndrome is the appropriate medical label to be attached to this excess of symptoms and a useful umbrella for that label."
Ex-soldier Daniel Martin, 35, suffers from a variety of illnesses including joint pain, poor concentration and memory, asthma and chronic fatigue syndrome.
Like other veterans, he blames cocktails of drugs prescribed by military doctors to protect against chemical attack, as well as exposure to depleted uranium munitions.