Amid increasing evidence that the Blackwater mercenaries who killed 17 Iraqis had not been attacked as they claim, the Iraqi Minister for Human Rights says they should stand trial:
Private security guards from the US firm Blackwater should stand trial in Iraq, according to Iraq's Minister for Human Rights, Mrs Wijdan Salim.
She said the Iraqi government's inquiry into a shooting incident which left some 17 Iraqi civilians dead would be made public within the next two weeks.
The Blackwater private security firm says its guards acted in self-defence.
But the minister said in her view all private security firms in Iraq should be liable under Iraqi criminal law.
However, she admitted a final ruling would up to the Iraqi courts to decide.
This incident is a crucial test of whether the Iraqi government is in fact "sovereign" as the Bush administration claims they are. If the Blackwater mercenaries are set free we will know that the sovereignty claim was always a myth.
And by the way, where are the thugs who killed the 17 Iraqis? Does anyone have any idea?
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