British commandos could have dedicated conflict crimes – BBC — RT World Information

One SAS squadron probably killed as much as 54 individuals unlawfully in a six-month tour in Afghanistan, the broadcaster alleged

The BBC claims it has discovered proof of killings allegedly dedicated by the British Particular Air Service (SAS) in Afghanistan within the early 2010s, a brand new Panorama documentary particulars. A sample seems to have emerged of illegal killings of Afghans by a squadron of SAS commandos throughout evening raids, with as many as 54 victims over a interval of simply six months. 

The allegations, which may flip into accusation of conflict crimes, had been angrily denied by the UK Ministry of Defence, which mentioned claims of illegal conduct by commandos had beforehand been correctly investigated.

“Neither investigation discovered enough proof to prosecute. Insinuating in any other case is irresponsible, incorrect and places our courageous Armed Forces personnel in danger each within the subject and reputationally,” the ministry mentioned.

Nonetheless, the BBC claimed that Royal Navy Police (RMP) investigators had been stonewalled by the navy management. Then-head of the UK Particular Forces, Common Sir Mark Carleton-Smith, did not share with the probe proof of misconduct he had in his possession, the broadcaster mentioned.

The brand new documentary updates a earlier BBC investigation into SAS evening raids in Afghanistan. An nameless supply had shared with the outlet a whole lot of contemporaneous navy stories, together with operational accounts that the squadron had filed after missions.

After evaluating particulars of missions with a US navy log, the BBC managed to determine a number of the areas of the raids and went to Afghanistan to speak to witnesses and acquire forensic proof, reminiscent of pictures of bullet holes in partitions.

In a number of instances, what was uncovered throughout these journeys contradicted what the SAS workforce had reported about killing enemy combatants in firefights or reacting with lethal pressure to detainees all of the sudden pulling hid weapons throughout a search. What the BBC discovered on the bottom at three areas pointed to executions having been carried out at shut vary, specialists instructed the broadcaster.

The squadron in query was deployed to the Helmand province in November 2010 for a six-month tour. The paperwork scrutinized by the BBC reveled a sample of suspicious killings justified by what was claimed to be the invention of weapons on the scene, it mentioned.

These weapons, together with AK-47 assault rifles and grenades, could have been planted by the British troops as grounds for killing individuals who in actuality posed no menace, the BBC prompt. The squadron reportedly “was making an attempt to realize the next physique depend than the one it had changed.” The overall quantity killed through the tour was within the triple digits, the report mentioned.

The post-raid stories that the workforce wrote aroused a specific amount of suspicion among the many officers on the time, who mentioned they had been “fairly unbelievable” and referred to the missions because the “newest bloodbath” by the squadron. A high-ranking Particular Forces officer in Afghanistan warned in a secret memo that there may very well be a “deliberate coverage” of extrajudicial killings of fighting-age males, the BBC revealed.

A uncommon inside evaluation was ordered, however the investigating Particular Forces officer “appeared to take the SAS model of occasions at face worth,” the documentary mentioned. The proof was labeled and never shared with the navy police, who in 2013 performed a separate homicide investigation linked with one of many raids.

In 2014, the RMP launched Operation Northmoor to research greater than 600 alleged offenses by British forces in Afghanistan. A number of the killings of the SAS squadron had been on the record, the BBC mentioned. It added that RMP investigators instructed it that the British navy had obstructed their efforts to assemble proof.

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