Iraq: Peacekeeping Operations

Defence written question – answered on 15th May 2008.

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Photo of Harry Cohen Harry Cohen Labour, Leyton and Wanstead

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the Answer of 31 March 2008, Official Report, column 518W, on Iraq: peacekeeping operations, whether the members of the former Serious Crimes Unit of the Basra Police were ever in the custody of UK forces; and what information he has regarding their current location.

Photo of Des Browne Des Browne Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence, Secretary of State, Scotland Office, The Secretary of State for Defence, The Secretary of State for Scotland

Some members of the Serious Crimes Unit (SCU) have been held in the custody of UK forces in Iraq, although we have no reason to believe that these included any of the individuals against whom arrest warrants have been issued. Those SCU members previously held by UK forces have now been released, as our in-theatre review process concluded that their internment was no longer deemed necessary for imperative reasons of security.

I am withholding information relating to the current location of former members of the SCU as disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces.

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