Iraqi Civilians Killed in U.S. Army Raids

May 22, 2006

On May 15, the Reuters news agency reported that U.S. forces killed 25 civilians in raids carried out near Baghdad recently.

The Muslim Clerics Association in Iraq issued a statement saying "We hold the Iraqi government and the occupiers responsible for this brutal atrocity."

They accused U.S. forces of attacking civilian houses and killing people as they tried to flee. 25 were reportedly killed in Latifiya, 25 miles south of Baghdad, on Saturday and Sunday. People ran away from their houses to seek protection but U.S. forces followed them and killed them, according to eyewitnesses.

U. S. military forces issued a statement saying "American and Iraqi forces on Saturday evening carried out a severe air strike in the area of Latifiya against houses with civilians."

Also, on May 19, the New York Times reported that an official military investigation into an incident in Iraq last November has determined that U.S. marines "deliberately killed innocent Iraqi civilians." Previously, human rights organizations accused the marines of killing at least 15 civilians in the incident, but the recent inquiry states the actual death toll may be "twice as high."