Armed forces minister slams Panorama's Iraq murders story

The Armed Forces minister, Bob Ainsworth, yesterday condemned a Panorama documentary which includes allegations that British troops tortured and murdered six Iraqi civilians, including a teenage boy, reports the Daily Telegraph.

Ainsworth, who has not seen the programme, said the claims were unfounded. The BBC documentary includes accusations that soldiers mutilated Iraqi insurgents’ bodies after a battle, tortued detainees and covered up six murders in custody – including that of a 14-year-old boy.

The documentary, due to air on Monday night, centres on the so-called Battle of Danny Boy in May 2004 when UK forces were ambushed in Southern Iraq. The military said it conducted its own investigation into the claims; the BBC countered that it was wrong to suggest the corporation could not carry out its own investigation.

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