Sun, Jul 18, 2004 - Page 1 News List

Iraqi PM Allawi executed prisoners himself: report

DPA , SYDNEY

A respected Australian journalist yesterday claimed that Iraqi interim Prime Minister Iyad Allawi shot seven Iraqi insurgents with a pistol at a Baghdad police station in the week preceding the handover of power from the US last month.

Paul McGeough, writing in the Sydney Morning Herald, said two unnamed witnesses to the execution-style killings told him Allawi shot seven insurgents, six of whom died.

Allawi's office has denied the claims, saying the interim leader had not visited the prison and does not carry a gun.

"The prime minister is said to have responded that they deserved worse than death, that each was responsible for killing more than 50 Iraqis each and at that point he is said to have pulled a gun and proceeded to aim at and shoot all seven," McGeough told Australia's ABC TV. "Six of them died. The seventh, according to one witness, was wounded in the chest, according to the other witness was wounded in the neck, and presumed to be dead."

About a dozen Iraqi policemen and four American bodyguards to Allawi witnessed the killings, McGeough said.

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