U.S. forces apologize for civilian death

Thi-Qar | The U.S. forces offered an official apology for the Thi-Qar province police over the killing of a civilian in an airdrop operation on Friday, a security official said.


“The apology, offered on Saturday by two senior U.S. officers, involved a pledge not to conduct any more operations without the previous knowledge of the local police,” the Thi-Qar police chief, Brig. Sabah Mohsen al-Fatlawi, told Aswat al-Iraq — Voices of Iraq — (VOI).

“The U.S. side also pledged to afford moral and financial compensations for the wounded victims in the operation and pay for their treatment and transport to Baghdad,” Fatlawi added.

On Friday the media advisor for the U.S. army, Abdellatif Rayan, said a joint Iraqi-U.S. force killed a civilian and wounded two others during an airdrop operation in central al-Nassiriya city during the early hours of the day.

“The airdropping targeted the house of a wanted man believed to be a financer of special groups in al-Thawra neighborhood, central Nassiriya. The force opened fire at a man when he raised a weapon, killing him in self defense and wounding two others,” Rayan told VOI.

Earlier, Maj. Nasser al-Majidi, a media spokesman for the Thi-Qar province police, told VOI a U.S. force airdropped troops on the house of 65-year-old citizen Muhammad Hammoud Hereiz in Nassiriya, killing him instantly.

“The U.S. force denied access to Iraqi policemen to the area under the gun,” the source said, not indicating the reason for this U.S. operation.

Thi-Qar, 380 km south of Baghad, has an area of 12,900 square kilometers (4,980.7 sq mi). In 2003 the estimated population of the governorate was 1,454,200 people. Thi-Qar’s capital is the city of al-Nassiriya. It also includes the ancient Sumerian ruins of Ur, Eridu, Lagash and Ngirsu. Before 1976 the province was known as al-Muntafiq.