First Published: 2003-11-18

 
Iraq's Turki criticises coalition 'violations'
 

Human rights minister say Iraqis, wrongfully treated after May 1, have right to demand compensation from coalition.

 

Middle East Online

By Joelle Bassoul - BAGHDAD

Coalition is accused of aggression, maltreatment and homicide against detainees

Iraq's interim Human Rights Minister Abdel Basset Turki has criticised alleged violations against Iraqis by US-led forces occupying the war-torn country.

Heading a ministry that did not exist under former leader Saddam Hussein's regime, Turki said that "there are violations under the occupation."

"We have demanded the Americans come to terms with their acts because the Iraqi people, who have suffered enough, cannot bear anymore," he said.

"The interim Governing Council has dealt with the issue directly with the coalition saying it cannot remain silent on this phenomenon that is spreading.

"The Americans know that this can no longer continue. If they want to build a democratic society here, the first steps must be right", said Turki.

In a statement distributed last week, the American military reiterated that it was the "responsibility of all coalition forces to treat all people with dignity and respect."

The text cited nine cases against the military accusing it of "aggression", "maltreatment" and "homicide" against detainees.

A court martial hearing began Tuesday in Tikrit, north of Baghdad where a lieutenant colonel was charged with beating an Iraqi detainee, in the first legal proceedings to be reported against such a high-ranking US officer in Iraq.

Lieutenant-Colonel Allen West is charged on three counts, for beating Yahya Jhodri Hamoody, threatening to kill him and firing his gun near the detainee's head during interrogation on August 20.

According to the minister, Iraqis have the right to demand compensation from the coalition.

But, he said, "coalition forces will not compensate those wrongfully treated before May 1," when US President George W. Bush declared an end to major hostilities in Iraq.

"We consider that Iraqis wronged ... have the right to compensation from the coalition, as stipulated by UN resolution 1483 on the occupation force," Turki said.

"If we don't reach an understanding ... we will have to resort to justice," he said.

The only people eligible for compensation since May 1 are those who have lost a relative one or had property destroyed by US forces.

In September, the US-led coalition said it had paid out around one million dollars in compensation for Iraqis killed, injured or whose property was damaged by occupying troops.

Since October 30, US forces have received more than 8,000 complaints, of which 3,327 have been compensated with a total of 1.3 million dollars, the American military said.

Turki also said that political prisoners should have certain rights and that his ministry has demanded to visit all 55 Iraqis most wanted by the American forces, which have so far captured 38 of them.

"The coalition responded saying those persons are prisoners of war and ... that the only party that can visit them and hand over letters is the Red Cross," he said, adding not all 55 are prisoners of war and that the coalition cannot forbid visits to civilian prisoners.

 

Bloodshed in Gaza surges amid no truce

Major western powers call for Libya ceasefire

UN warns buying oil from terrorists could lead to sanctions

Syria rebels advance towards Hama military airport

Emirates airline to avoid flying over Iraq

Italian fire-fighting planes to come to Libya rescue

US-Israeli ties sink to new depths over Gaza war

Air Algerie crash black boxes sent to France

Warning of Tripoli catastrophe after huge oil depot blaze

US, UN call for immediate Gaza ceasefire

Egypt army kills 14 jihadists in restive Sinai Peninsula

Calls for temporary Gaza ceasefire fall on deaf ears

Yemen army foils new Qaeda attempt to seize military posts

Investigators need ‘few days’ to probe cause of Algeria plane crash

Tunisia army suffers more losses in open war with terrorism

Jihadists advance amid escalation in Syria anti-regime offensive

Iraq Shiite militia takes bloody revenge against ‘Islamic State’ in Baquba

Fierce clashes kill at least 38 people in Benghazi

Israel resumes devastating military assault on Gaza

Thousands face famine as food security situation worsens in Somalia

Death toll in Gaza climbs as fragile ceasefire reveals destruction

Egypt summons Turkey charge d'affaires for second time in one week

‘Islamic State’ jihadists dynamite Shiite shrine in Mosul

US evacuates embassy staff in Libya over ‘real risk’

Investigators begin 'difficult' probe into Air Algerie plane disaster

Armed men snatch Head of Baghdad Provincial Council

‘Islamic State’ beheads Syrian soldiers in Raqa

Kerry in Paris for talks on long-term Gaza truce

Hezbollah chief speaks out on Gaza

Two rival Islamic states in Syria power struggle

Crete protest against Syria chemicals destruction in Mediterranean

74 killed in IS assault on Syria regime territory

Iran confirms arrest of Washington Post correspondent

Somali 'Shebab commanders' killed in AU offensive

Paris: survivors of Air Algerie jet crash 'unlikely'

Jordan shots down drone near Syria border

Gaza civilian toll spiralling to above 800

UN urges Europe to tackle Mediterranean migrant crisis

From Israel with ‘virus’: Death threat letter reaches Palestinian mission in France

Ordeal of ‘apostasy’ woman ends with departure from Sudan

Another bloody day as Israel targets civilians in UN-run school

‘Islamic State’ launches multiple attacks on Syria army

Attack on Egypt army post bears fingerprints of foreign intelligence

Harassment of Christians escalates in Islamist-run Sudan

Air Algerie plane goes missing over Mali