The independent inquiry into allegations of unlawful executions by British special forces in Afghanistan between 2010 and 2013 has officially commenced, with the chairman, Lord Justice Haddon-Cave, stating the serious nature of the allegations. The inquiry will scrutinize reported illegal activities by British armed forces as well as the Royal Military Police’s (RMP) investigation into these alleged executions.
- The inquiry, launched in response to legal challenges and significant media investigations, aims to probe illegal activities by British forces in Afghanistan during 2010-2013 and evaluate the adequacy of RMP’s investigations into reported unlawful killings.
- Lord Justice Haddon-Cave stressed that anyone found to have violated the law should be referred to relevant authorities for investigation, emphasizing its importance for both the reputation of the armed forces and the country.
- Two RMP investigations, codenamed Operation Northmoor and Operation Cestro, will be scrutinized in the probe. While Operation Northmoor failed to lead to any charges despite allegations of executions by special forces, Operation Cestro referred three soldiers to the Service Prosecuting Authority, but none were eventually prosecuted.
- The inquiry will also focus on allegations of numerous executions, the alleged cover-up of illegal activities, and inadequate investigations by the Royal Military Police.
- The Independent Inquiry was initiated after legal challenges to the Government by Leigh Day solicitors representing families affected by the alleged incidents and significant media investigations into the matter.