Military officials said on Friday that the hearing is to reconvene in Germany on 20 July.

The Article 32 hearing, similar to a civilian grand jury in the United States, was held between 25 and 28 June for Captain Rogelio Maynulet of the 1st Armoured Division.

Maynulet was charged on 12 June with murder and dereliction of duty for the suspected killing of an Iraqi male on 21 May near Kufa, south of Baghdad.

"The charges stem from an incident in which US forces near Kufa came into contact with a black sedan believed to contain militia forces," the military said in a statement.

Killed at close range

"A chase began, and US forces shot at the vehicle. The driver and a passenger were wounded. Shortly thereafter, the wounded driver was shot and killed at close range."

Article 32 court hearings are called by the commanding officer of a soldier's unit to determine whether to recommend a court-martial or other punishment under military law.

A British soldier will also stand trial over a separate shooting incident involving a 13-year-old boy in Iraq.

The UK Attorney General said on Friday that soldier, only known as Private Johnson, would face a charge of unlawful wounding over the non-fatal shooting.

The incident occurred last September, Lord Goldsmith said in a statement. No date has been set for a trial or preliminary hearing.