Iraq: Fugitive VP Asks Rights Groups To Investigate Torture Allegations; 9 Killed in Attacks

Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi called on international human rights groups to independently find out if the Iraqi government tortured his bodyguard to death. Iraq’s Human Rights Ministry claims that Amir Sarbut Zaidan al-Batawi refused treatment for a kidney ailment while in detention, but the vice president says there is clear evidence that the 33-year-old Batawi was tortured.

Hashemi, Batawi and dozens of other Hashemi staff members were accused of having ties to terrorism. Hashemi fled to Iraqi Kurdistan where he awaits the opportunity to clear his name far from Maliki government manipulations. Yesterday, the Human Rights Commission, which is independent of the ministry, admitted that evidence suggests other Hashemi bodyguards may have been coerced into giving the confessions that implicated Hashemi and the others. The vice president insists the accusations are politically motivated and false.

At least nine Iraqis were killed and 16 more were wounded in attacks.

Five bodies were found in a building used by gangsters in Basra.

In Falluja, one policeman was killed and two more were wounded during a roadside bombing.

A grenade destroyed a car in Khamsa Kilwa, killing one civilian and wounded two more.

In Mosul, clashes left one policeman killed and another wounded.

A policeman was shot dead in Balad Ruz.

Four policemen were wounded during an attack on a Saidiya checkpoint.

Three people were wounded in Saqlawiya when bombs planted at a sheikh’s home exploded.

A car bomb wounded three people, including a policeman, in Tuz Khormato.

An I.E.D. found near officials’ homes in Amara was found and defused.

Author: Margaret Griffis

Margaret Griffis is a journalist from Miami Beach, Florida and has been covering Iraqi casualties for since 2006.