Amnesty International: Iraqis tortured to extract confessions

Amnesty International: Iraq used torture to extract confessions from convicts in Speicher massacre.
Representational Photo

( Baghdad – Amnesty International has condemned the execution of 36 Iraqi men for their involvement in the Camp Speicher massacre, claiming that some of their confessions were obtained under threat and torture.

Amnesty International had called on Iraqi authorities to suspend the executions and to hold fair and transparent trials for those accused of involvement in the massacre.

The executions were carried out on Sunday, at a prison in southern Iraq. Those executed were convicted for the deaths of as many as 1,700 soldiers, mostly Shi’ites, two years ago.

The soldiers were killed after they fled from Camp Speicher, a former US military base, when it was attacked by ISIS in 2014. The Iraqi government forces and Shi’ite militias recaptured the region last year.

Amnesty said, “One of the men executed confessed to killing 60 cadets at Speicher after receiving threats that his wife and sisters would be raped. He was also beaten with cables and given electric shocks,” adding that, “Even though he recanted this `confession’ in court, according to lawyers, it was used to justify its verdict.”

The government came under increased pressure from local Shi’ite politicians to execute militants sentenced to death after the massive bombing that targeted al-Karrada area in Baghdad on July 3, leaving at least 324 casualties.

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