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New survey of Iraqi death toll: 151,000

Conducted jointly by the Iraqi government and the World Health Organization, its finding is lower than the 600,000 arrived at by John Hopkins University.

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A new study conducted jointly by the Iraqi government and the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 151,000 Iraqis died in the years following the US-led invasion of Iraq. The survey, the latest of many different estimates of Iraqi mortality during the war, is a quarter of the toll calculated by an earlier study by Iraqi and Johns Hopkins University researchers, but much higher than some other estimates by independent groups and US military.

The study suggests that "roughly 9 out of 10 of those deaths were a consequence of U.S. military operations, insurgent attacks and sectarian warfare," reports The Washington Post. In addition, there was a 60 percent rise in nonviolent deaths, including those attributed to disease.

Iraq's population-wide mortality rate nearly doubled, and the death rate from violence increased tenfold after the coalition attack. Men between 15 and 60 were at the greatest risk.

The Post also notes that figures provided last month by Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top US commander in Iraq, between January 2006 and December 2007, "indicated that some 40,000 civilians had died in the past two years in Iraq."

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