Parliamentary debate over alleged abuses in Iraq postponed

20 November 2006

Parliamentary debate over alleged abuses in Iraq postponed

SP Member of Parliament and foreign affairs spokesman Harry van Bommel says that he “can live with” the decision by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Defence to delay to a later date a debate on the alleged abuse of Iraqi prisoners. Parliament will first present the government with a number of written questions soliciting information on the matter, and no decision will be taken on further action until next Monday.

Harry van BommelThe SP argued that a debate should be held this week. Top of the agenda must be the urgent need for a thoroughgoing enquiry to bring to light just who was involved and who amongst them was responsible for what. The best instrument for such an investigation is an official parliamentary enquiry, and a debate would help to create a groundswell of support for this idea. “The importance of this affair goes far beyond what happened three years ago,” Mr Van Bommel insisted. “It touches directly on the methods employed by Dutch soldiers in Afghanistan and on the interests of those soldiers, and for this reason the matter remains urgent.”

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