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Italy military court indicts soldiers for shooting Iraqi civilians in ambulance mix-up

[JURIST] An Italian military tribunal in Rome has indicted three Italian soldiers for a 2004 attack on an ambulance in the town of Nasiriyah in Iraq [JURIST news archive] that resulted in the deaths of four civilians, Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera reported [report, in Italian] Thursday. The three soldiers fired on an ambulance they say they mistook for a vehicle containing an explosive device. Corporal Raffaele Allocca claims marshal Fabio Stival ordered him to fire on the ambulance and maintains that the civilian killings were accidental. Both soldiers are among the three indicted for improper use of weapons and attacking civilians charged with rescue detail.

The indictments stem from the first court proceeding for Italian military personnel since the beginning of the nation's deployment in Iraq in 2003. Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi [official profile] has said Italian troops, which number only about 1,000 today, will be completely evacuated from the region by the end of 2006. AFP has more.

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