Defence Select Committee recommends immediate closure of Iraq Historic Allegations Team – our reaction

he Defence Select Committee Report has today recommended the immediate closure of the Iraq Historic Allegations Team (IHAT).

Commenting on the recommendation, Hilary Meredith, CEO at Hilary Meredith Solicitors said:

“It is absolutely right that IHAT should be shut down with immediate effect.

“Funded by the Ministry of Defence (MoD), this flawed, incompetent and repugnant organisation has cost the taxpayer over £35 million and left a trail of destruction in its wake.   Careers, relationship, families and ultimately lives have all been destroyed.

“Had the MoD supported our troops many of the false accusations brought by IHAT would have come to light much sooner, saving money and anguish. The Mod must take responsibility for creating an environment in which claims were allowed against service personnel with little or no supporting evidence.  I am also calling for a full inquiry into the relationship between the MoD, Phil Shiner and his firm Public Interest Lawyers.”

Continued Hilary: “I passionately believe that the MoD should be held to account when it fails our servicemen and women.  Since January 2016, I have been calling for a framework of support and assistance to be put in place.”

Having consulted with veterans, Hilary Meredith is calling servicemen and women subject to judicial process to be guaranteed:

The right to a framework of help and support for serving and ex-military personnel to include, Chain of Command, welfare and medical support.

The right to independent legal advice.

The right for funding for such advice.

The right to a fair trial.

Time limits be imposed on these cases.

The rights promised to military personnel under the military covenant to be upheld.