An Iraqi police officer uses a bomb detector at a checkpoint in central Baghdad. (File photo)
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki says the Baghdad government adopted appropriate steps a long time ago on defective bomb detection devices.
“We took the necessary measures in a timely manner on this file, a long time ago,” Maliki said on Sunday.
The Iraqi prime minister noted that legal action had been taken against some of those involved in the case of defective bombs.
“We will continue to follow this file in accordance with developments inside and outside Iraq,” the Iraqi premier stated.
Iraq’s Deputy Interior Minister Adnan al-Assadi has said the devices will be replaced. However, he has not specified what the faulty detectors will be substituted with and when the replacement will take place.
James McCormick, a UK businessman, has been found guilty on three counts of fraud for the sale of bomb detector devices worth over £50 million ($76 million), after admitting to the court he knew the devices did not work.
The ADE651 device was claimed to detect explosives at long range or deep underground using a “programmed” card reader powered solely by the user’s static electricity. In fact, the card reader was found to be an empty plastic box.
The device has been sold to many governments, defense agencies and private institutions around the world including Iraq, which bought 6,000 devices between 2008 and 2010 to be used at checkpoints within the country.
On May 2, the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) said that April 2013 was Iraq’s deadliest month since June 2008, with a total of 712 people killed and over 1,600 wounded in bomb attacks and other forms of violence. Almost 600 of the victims are reported to be civilians and the rest were members of Iraqi security forces.
UNAMI also said that Baghdad was the worst affected governorate with a total of 211 killed and nearly 500 injured.