US troops indicted over death of Spanish cameraman in Iraq

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A Spanish judge has indicted three US soldiers for a second time in connection with the death of a Spanish cameraman in Iraq in 2003.

The case relates to the death of Jose Couso in Baghdad after US infantry directed tank shells at the Palestine Hotel where journalists were staying.

This second indictment follows a re-opening of the case which was closed after a similar ruling in 2007.  It alleges that three US troops, Philip de Camp, Phillip Wolford and Thomas Gibson, were linked to the tank fire which killed Couso who was filming the battle.

Couso’s family and some journalists have claimed the U.S. military should have been aware that the hotel was a haven for journalists and did not contain combatants.

Couso’s lawyer has previously admitted it would be difficult to put the US soldiers on trial in Spain. The Pentagon, faced with similar charges from other national courts in the past, has not turned over American soldiers.