An unprecedented, two-year public inquiry into the conduct of British soldiers in Iraq is expected to report stinging criticism of senior army officers and their legal advisers, and highlight the failure to pass orders down the chain of command. The inquiry's report into the September death of Baha Mousa , a Basra hotel worker, is also understood to include scathing criticism of military intelligence officers and of the lack of training and preparation British troops received for the invasion of Iraq and its aftermath. The report by retired appeal court judge Sir William Gage, to be published on Thursday, is unlikely to accuse the army of systematic torture since his terms of reference are limited to the circumstances surrounding Mousa's death. Lawyers acting for families of Iraqis detained by British troops, however, have since collected fresh material which they claim does point to widespread abuse.
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Death of Baha Mousa
Those arrested were detained and Mousa died on the evening of 15 September after being subjected to sustained and brutal treatment by British soldiers. Some of the other detainees were also severely assaulted. In the relatives of six Iraqi civilians killed by UK soldiers in brought a case in the United Kingdom against the Secretary of State for Defence. Four of the men had been shot by military personnel, one had allegedly been beaten and forced into the Shatt Al-Arab river, where his body was found.
Baha Mousa inquiry: Reaction to report
The inquiry into his death found that Mousa's death was caused by "factors including lack of food and water, heat, exhaustion, fear, previous injuries and the hooding and stress positions used by British troops - and a final struggle with his guards". The inquiry heard that Mousa was hooded for almost 24 hours during his 36 hours of custody by the 1st Battalion of the Queen's Lancashire Regiment and that he suffered at least 93 injuries prior to his death. The report later details that Mousa was subject to several practices banned under both domestic law and the Geneva Conventions. Seven British soldiers were charged in connection with the case. Six were found not guilty. Corporal Donald Payne pleaded guilty to inhumane treatment of a prisoner and was jailed for a year and dismissed from the Army.
The Baha Mousa Public Inquiry
The Baha Mousa Public Inquiry report
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