UK Army in Iraq: Time to Come Clean on Civilian Torture
This report focuses on key aspects of the UK Army’s procedures for dealing with detained civilians, particularly during the period when the fighting against Saddam Hussein’s forces officially stopped and the hand-over to the Iraqi authorities took place: 1 May 2003 to 30 June 2004. This was the period during which Baha Mousa, an Iraqi hotel worker, died some thirty-six hours after British soldiers took him into custody in September 2003 and several other civilians were severely tortured and ill-treated.
This report surveys a number of specific incidents of abuse of Iraqi civilians by UK Army forces during the period when the fighting against Saddam Hussein’s forces officially stopped and the hand-over to the Iraqi authorities took place: 1 May 2003 to 30 June 2004. It seeks to examine the underlying military policies and doctrines in operation at the time, as well as the steps apparently subsequently taken within the military to prevent future abuses. Also examined is the use of the five banned interrogation techniques, as well as the UK’s pre-invasion planning or lack of it to deal with civilian detainees. Other aspect examined is the human rights training which was or was not given, not only to ordinary soldiers but to specialised interrogators, and the role of medical personnel and legal advisors.
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