Chilcot report: 'tragedy' that human rights assessments not properly made
Iraq has been plagued by bombings and other sectarian violence since the invasion © AFP/Getty Images
‘It’s a tragedy that politicians and their advisers failed to properly assess the human rights consequences of such a massive military operation’ - Kate Allen
Responding to the publication this morning of Sir John Chilcot’s report into the 2003 invasion of Iraq, Amnesty International UK Director Kate Allen said:
“In the lead-up to the Iraq invasion we warned that there could be terrible consequences and tragically we were proved right, with thousands of civilians killed and injured, millions of people forced from their homes and the whole country thrown into chaos.
“At the time we had a clear sense that politicians were intent on invading Iraq at any cost and that they’d set out to use the appalling human rights record of Saddam Hussein’s rule to help justify the decision to invade. Iraqi abuses we’d been documenting for years were suddenly being mentioned in speeches and in Government briefing papers.
“It’s a tragedy that politicians and their advisers failed to properly assess the human rights consequences of such a massive military operation (including the horrible sectarian violence it helped unleash), and it’s also a tragedy that the horrors of Abu Ghraib and cases like Baha Mousa all followed.
"Hundreds of thousands of people died in Iraq, during the invasion and its extended aftermath, including UK service personnel. It’s therefore vital that lessons are learnt after Sir John Chilcot has so comprehensively pointed towards what some of those are.
“One way of showing that the Government has tried to learn lessons from Iraq would be for it to ensure that all credible allegations of unlawful killing, torture and unauthorised detention at the hands of the UK armed forces in Iraq are properly investigated.”
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