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British Soldiers (Prosecutions)

The Solicitor-General (Ms Harriet Harman): My right hon. Friend the Attorney-General has made the following ministerial statements, Official Report, Lords, 3 February 2005, column WS17, and Official Report, Lords, 4 February 2005, column WS 21:

"I undertook in my statement of 14 June 2004, Official Report, columns WS22–23 to inform the House by way of written statement when any further charges are laid against soldiers arising from incidents in Iraq.

The Army prosecuting authority has directed that seven individuals should stand trial by court martial for a joint offence of murder and a second joint charge contrary to section 70 of the Army Act of violent disorder contrary to section 2 of the Public Order Act 1986. The matter relates to the death of Mr. Nadhem Abdullah on 11 May 2003 in Al U'Zayra in southern Iraq, following an incident at the roadside. The seven charged with the offence were all members of the 3rd Battalion the Parachute Regiment at the time. The three men who have been directed to stand trial and who can be named are:

I will give the names of the remaining soldiers by written statement once they have been informed of the charges against them.

No date has yet been set for trial nor a preliminary hearing in this matter."


"Further to my statement of 3 February 2005, Official Report, column WS17, two additional individuals have now been told of the charges they face. They are:

of the 3rd Battalion the Parachute Regiment, and former member of the same regiment:

The charges relate to an incident which allegedly took place on 11 May 2003 in Al U'Zayra in southern Iraq."