Sat, Nov 29, 2003 - Page 1 News List

Iraqi general dies during interrogation

THE GUARDIAN AND AP , BAGHDAD

A former Iraqi general suspected of financing anti-coalition activities died on Thursday while being interrogated by US forces.

A statement by the coalition in Baghdad said Major General Abed Hamed Mowhoush, who was in the Republican Guard, was captured near the Syrian border early last month. He fell ill yesterday morning during "an interview with US forces" in the town of Qaim, 320km northwest of Baghdad, and died.

"Mowhoush said he didn't feel well and subsequently lost consciousness," the statement said.

"The soldier questioning him found no pulse and called for medical authorities. A surgeon responded within five minutes to continue advanced cardiac life support techniques, but they were ineffective," it said.

He was pronounced dead by a US military physician.

According to the on-site surgeon it appeared General Mowhoush had died of "natural causes," the military said. The cause of death and interrogation techniques are under investigation, but Mowhoush's head was not hooded during questioning, the 82nd Airborne said. The statement did not give his age.

Mowhoush, a major general in the Republican Guard's air defense branch, was one of 112 people arrested during an anti-insurgency sweep on Oct. 5 around Qaim, located about 2km from the Syrian border. At the time the US military suggested he was funding anti-coalition activities.

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