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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

UK soldiers committed gratuitous violence against Iraqis, inquiry finds

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

London, Sept 8, IRNA -- British soldiers inflicted an 'appalling episode of serious gratuitous violence' on Iraqi civilians, a year-long inquiry into the 2003 death of Basra hotel worker Baha Mousa has found.

The damning 1,400 page report, published Thursday, also makes a devastating indictment of Britain's military culture of indiscipline and widespread ignorance of what was permitted in handling prisoners of war.

Mousa, who died in British custody with 93 injuries, is the most high-profile among more than 130 Iraqi cases brought to UK courts who allege that they or their family members were unlawfully detained, ill-treated, or killed by UK forces.

An inquiry has also been agreed about the deaths of 20 Iraqi prisoners, who are alleged to have been murdered after being detained by British troops at Camp Abu Naji in 2004.

Chairman of the Mousa inquiry, retired appeals court judge, Sir William Gage, said a 'large number' of soldiers were involved in the assault which included on other detainees, and that many others, including several officers, must have known what was happening.

Gage also condemned 'corporate failure' at the Ministry of Defence over the use of banned interrogation methods in Iraq and the absence of any 'proper MoD doctrine on interrogation'.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 30554982

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