There have been many news accounts of Iraqi civilians trying to flee Basra and being blocked by Saddam Fedeheen death squads. CNN has a more detailed report via a reporter on the scene:
“More than 1,000 women and children, escorted by some men, tried to make it to safety from the city of Basra across one of the main bridges to the southern side, where British forces are encamped.
“[A]s the main group tried to make it across, a four-by-four vehicle drove onto the bridge. Behind it was mounted a machine gun that opened fire at what appeared to be the civilians on the bridge and the British forces at the other end of the bridge.
“About 200 or 300 of the civilians fled back to the north side of the river. The others made it across to safety, although some casualties were taken.”
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