In May, the UN Committee Against Torture reportedly called on the UK to investigate claims of murder and abuse by its troops in Iraq, urging London against introducing laws granting amnesty to soldiers who could be implicated in war crimes.
An investigation by the BBC’s Panorama programme and the Sunday Times has revealed that the government and the armed forces of the UK were involved in covering up torture and the illegal killing of civilians by UK troops in Afghanistan and Iraq.
The probe quoted at least 11 British detectives as saying that they found “credible evidence” of war crimes, with insiders insisting that the UK soldiers should have been prosecuted for the killings.
The detectives were part of the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (IHAT) and Operation Northmoor, which investigated alleged war crimes committed by UK forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, respectively. These criminal inquiry teams were closed before a single soldier was indicted.
One IHAT detective was cited by BBC Panorama as saying that “the [UK] Ministry of Defence had no intention of prosecuting any soldier of whatever rank he was unless it was absolutely necessary, and they couldn’t wriggle their way out of it.”
Another detective claimed that the victims of the UK soldiers’ war crimes had been seriously let down, adding, “I use the word ‘disgusting’.”
“And I feel for the families because… they’re not getting justice. How can you hold your head up as a…