Russia calls on US to probe WikiLeaks documents

Russia called on the US to carry out probe into allegations contained in leaked Iraq war documents.

Last Updated: Oct 28, 2010, 17:33 PM IST

Moscow: Russia on Thursday called on the United
States to carry out a detailed investigation into allegations
contained in leaked Iraq war documents published by the
whistle-blowing website WikiLeaks.

"The US authorities bear the responsibility to conduct
a thorough, independent and transparent investigation of all
the reports that have appeared in the media," the Russian
foreign ministry said in a statement.

The statement pointed out that Washington regularly
ticked off other countries for human rights violations and
said it should live up to its own standards by investigating
the allegations of abuses by troops in Iraq.

"We are convinced that such a position will
demonstrate the United States` adherence to the high standards
in the human rights sphere that it constantly calls on other
countries to observe," it said.

The ministry called for the results of the
investigation to be published and made available to human
rights groups.

It expressed the hope that the US handling of the
scandal would allow it to pass a "serious test" during an
upcoming review by the UN Human Rights Council which evaluates
respect for human rights in its member states.

Repeated US criticism of human rights violations in
Russia, especially under the previous administration of George
W Bush, has rankled the Kremlin and contributed to a chill in
ties.

US President Barack Obama has taken a less aggressive
stance on human rights in Russia, even though his
administration has regularly expressed concerns over police
breaking up peaceful demonstrations in Russia.

Russian and international human rights campaigners
also accuse the country`s security forces of torture and abuse
in the North Caucasus where the Kremlin is seeking to root out
a Muslim insurgency.

WikiLeaks last week released the 400,000 classified US
military documents it said shed light on the Iraq war.

The documents showed alleged widespread torture by
Iraqi forces trained by the United States, and reports
suggesting the 15,000 additional civilian deaths in the Iraq
conflict.

US officials claimed WikiLeaks was jeopardising the
security of its troops and Iraqi civilians.

PTI