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WHAT IS WHITE PHOSPHOROUS?

EXPOSED to oxygen, this waxy substance will spontaneously burst into flame, giving off a thick, acrid smoke.

So WP is perfect for either smokescreens or for illumination at night.

But its effect on humans is hellish.

Molten blobs of WP will cling to the victim's flesh, searing through to the bone. The usual remedies against fire - water or wrapping the victim in blankets - will not stop it burning.

Under a 1980 convention, it is classed as an incendiary weapon and its use against civilians is banned.
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Publication:Sunday Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 20, 2005
Words:86
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