British forces in Iraq back abuse probe

British forces based in Iraq backed the investigation into alleged abuse by some of its troops in the south two years ago, a military spokesman said today.

The military police probe was launched after the News of the World newspaper claimed to have received video footage allegedly showing British troops using their fists and batons to beat a group of young Iraqis.

“We condemn all acts of abuse and brutality,” said Flight Lt Chris Thomas, a military spokesman in Basra, where most of the 8,000-plus British troops in Iraq are based.

“We hope that the good relations that the multinational forces have worked very hard to develop won’t be adversely affected by this material.”

Thomas said the allegations related “to only a tiny number of the 80,000 personnel that have served in Iraq”.

The newspaper says the video was filmed in 2004 by a corporal who urged the soldiers on during the alleged attack caught on tape, which it claimed was passed on by a whistleblower, who they have refused to identify.

It was unclear how news of the video will impact upon relations between British troops in southern Iraq and locals. Thomas declined to provide details on which units were based in Basra two years ago.

In recent times, ties have been strained with some Iraqi figures complaining about British detentions of local policemen linked to numerous kidnappings and killings, as well as British security control over Basra International Airport.

More in this Section

Antidepressant reduces anxiety rather than depression, study findsAntidepressant reduces anxiety rather than depression, study finds

Study reveals three billion fewer birds over North AmericaStudy reveals three billion fewer birds over North America

Canadian PM Trudeau cannot say how often he wore blackfaceCanadian PM Trudeau cannot say how often he wore blackface

Two to be sentenced for Emiliano Sala mortuary footageTwo to be sentenced for Emiliano Sala mortuary footage


Lifestyle

Audrey's been sorting out Cork people for ages.Ask Audrey: C’mere, what’s the story with Chris O’Dowd thinking he’s better than Cork people

So, I put a link to a short story up for my students the other day. The story was by Michael Morpurgo and I was delighted to find an online copy. It can be challenging when you are relying on non-paper texts to teach.Secret diary of an Irish teacher: I love physical books and always will

Celebrated actress Siobhán McSweeney may have found fame starring in a TV series set at the other end of the country, but Cork is never far from her thoughts, writes Ciara McDonnellHome is where the art is for Derry Girls actress

There are literally hundreds of free events on offer this evening for kids and adults on Culture Night. Marjorie Brennan selects the best of them, in Cork and beyondCulture Night: Get out and make the most of it

More From The Irish Examiner