Page last updated at 10:21 GMT, Wednesday, 7 April 2010 11:21 UK

US military 'trying to retrieve' Iraq killings video

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The US military says it is trying to retrieve the original video tapes of a controversial helicopter attack on a group of people in Iraq in 2007.

Footage of the attack was published on the internet by the website WikiLeaks.

Two of those killed were Reuters news agency employees whose cameras were mistaken for weapons, the US says.

The Pentagon has not questioned the video's authenticity but says it cannot make a complete verification until the original tapes have been located.

"We're attempting to retrieve the video from the unit who did the investigation," US Central Command spokesman Capt Jack Hanzlik was quoted as saying by the Associated Press news agency.


US troops are heard celebrating in the video

"We had no reason to hold the video [at Central Command] nor did the higher headquarters in Iraq," he added.

Helicopter crew can be heard celebrating on the video after firing at and killing alleged Iraqi insurgents, whom they refer to as "dead bastards".

A US military investigation into the attack concluded that correct rules of engagement were followed, despite the mistaken identification.

A spokesman for President Obama described the incident as "extremely tragic".

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China Post White House describes graphic Iraq shooting video as 'tragic' - 8 hrs ago US reviewing attack video - 11 hrs ago
Brisbane Times Graphic Iraq shooting video tragic: White House - 22 hrs ago
Asia Times Online Iraq video sets off renewed protests - 31 hrs ago
South Africa Star Video of US troops killing Reuters staffers 'missing' - 32 hrs ago

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