On June 26, 2008, the L.A. Times reported as follows:
“In the capital, three people were killed in a fiery crash after gunfire erupted as their vehicle passed U.S. soldiers with a convoy stopped near the Baghdad international airport to recover a stalled vehicle.”
As a consequence of the incident, the US Army gave a press statement and which was as follows:
“… that Mahdi and the two women were “criminals” and that an American convoy on the side of the secured road came under small-arms fire from the vehicle. Soldiers said they shot back. A weapon was found in the debris and two U.S. military vehicles were struck by bullets from the attack.”
More than a month later, the US Army reversed its position on this issue with McClatchy Newspapers reporting yesterday that U.S. concedes Iraq victims were law-abiding, not insurgents and apologized for the incident:
“This was an extremely unfortunate and tragic incident,” said Col. Allen Batschelet, chief of staff, MND-B and 4th Infantry Division, in a statement. “Our deepest regrets of sympathy and condolences go out to the family. We are taking several corrective measures to amend and eliminate the possibility of such situations happening in the future.”
Mohammed Hafeth, Mahdi’s son, however said the statement was insufficient.