Claims that British troops committed human rights violations in Iraq have been taken to London's High Court.

Claims that British troops committed human rights violations in Iraq have been taken to London's High Court.

Allegations that British troops were guilty of killing Iraqi civilians and “terrifying acts of brutality” have been made in London’s High Court. Claims that British interrogators were guilty of unlawful killings and torture in detention facilities in Iraq between 2003 and 2009 were put before two judges in an 82-page document on Tuesday. Lawyers representing 192 Iraqis are asking for a public inquiry into British detention practices following the US-led invasion of Iraq in March 2003. Britain's Ministry of Defence (MoD) has set up a body, called the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (IHAT), to investigate the claims. But Public Interest Lawyers (PIL), which is acting on behalf of the Iraqis, says the IHAT is not independent enough to investigate alleged "systemic" human rights violations on a huge scale. PIL argues there has already been too long a delay and only a fully independent probe can deliver justice. "Enough is enough. There must be a public inquiry in relation to the credible and prima facie cases of human rights violations perpetrated by the British military in Iraq from 2003-09," said Michael Fordham, a lawyer appearing for the Iraqis at the start of a three-day hearing at the High Court. The case seems to be the tip of the iceberg, with lawyers saying further 800 claims of violations will be made. BGH/SSM/HE
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