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Iraqis receive $6m in UK abuse case
British defence ministry to pay $6m for torture which led to death of Iraqi man.
Last Modified: 10 Jul 2008 19:28 GMT
Mousa's father said 'the death of my son is with me every day of my life' [GALLO/GETTY]

Britain's ministry of defence is to compensate the family of an Iraqi man who died after being tortured in the custody of British army soldiers serving in Iraq.

The $6m settlement involves the family of Baha Mousa and nine other Iraqis who were tortured by British forces after being detained in the southern city of Basra in 2003.

A post-mortem found that Mousa, 26, a hotel receptionist, suffered 93 different injuries, including a broken nose and fractured ribs, in the final hours of his life.

Mousa died of asphyxia, caused by a stress position that soldiers forced him to maintain, the post-mortem said.

British guilt

Senior British officials have publicly admitted violating European conventions prohibiting torture in their handling of the case.

Daoud Mousa, the victim's father and an Iraqi police colonel, praised the resolution of the long-standing dispute.

"The death of my son is with me every day of my life," he said.

"Today's settlement will ease a little of that pain and will go some way to enabling his children and my grandchildren to rebuild their lives."

Martyn Day, the senior lawyer handling the case, said the settlement was welcome after years of legal proceedings stemming from the events in Basra.

"We are very pleased that we have been able to reach this settlement," he said.

"Our clients have been through hell over the last few years and this settlement will go some way to enabling our clients to have some semblance of a decent future life."

Leigh Day & Co, the law firm which represented the men, said that British officials apologised during the mediation proceedings, but ministry of defence officials would not immediately confirm or deny that.

Source:
Agencies
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