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UN team to cooperate in probe into IS crimes in Iraq

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2019-09-20 08:48:52Xinhua Editor : Cheng Zizhuo ECNS App Download

A United Nations team tasked with investigation in crimes committed by the Islamic State (IS) group stressed the importance of cooperation with Iraqi authorities for justice of victims, the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) said in a statement on Thursday.

Karim Khan, head of the UN Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by Daesh/Islamic State (UNITAD), visited the central Salahudin province on Monday and met with senior officials in the provincial capital Tikrit, some 170 km north of Baghdad, according to the statement.

Khan discussed with the officials "cooperation with Iraqi judicial institutions, including practical steps in which the Camp Speicher investigations can be deepened with the assistance of UNITAD," the statement said.

In June 2014, IS militants carried out an attack on a military air base, known as Camp Speicher, and committed a massacre when they executed 1,700 Iraqi soldiers and students of the Air Force academy and threw their bodies into the Tigris River.

In a press conference, Khan emphasized that the justice UNITAD is helping bring about "is not born from some notion of collective guilt," but holds individuals accountable for specific crimes they committed, according to the statement.

The UNITAD chief voiced his sympathies for the victims and survivors and valued their continued search for justice, and also expressed his appreciation for local authorities for their continued support to UNITAD investigative efforts, it added.

Khan and his team also travelled to the town of Duloiya, some 90 km north of Baghdad, where he met with several leaders from al-Jabouri tribe, and "highlighted the courage of those who fought against the terrorist organization," the statement added.

The UNITAD team was formed in 2017 to support Iraq's efforts in holding the extremist IS group accountable for the crimes committed against the people of Iraq.

Previously, the Iraqi government pledged to support UNITAD efforts in investigating IS atrocities against the Yazidi minority in Sinjar district of Nineveh province, the Camp Speicher massacre and other crimes against innocent people across Iraq.

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