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Afghan video incident: 3 get non-judicial punishment

August 27, 2012 23:15 IST

Three marines have received non-judicial punishment for their role in the incident in which United States soldiers were accused of urinating on dead Taliban fighters in Afghanistan and recording the act.

Outraged at such a video that came to light in January earlier this year after it was leaked on YouTube, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta had ordered an investigation into the incident.

"Three marines received non-judicial punishment today for violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice for their role in the desecration and filming of deceased Taliban that became public in January 2012," the Pentagon said on the completion of the investigation.

Disciplinary actions against other Marines involved in the incident will be announced at a later date, it said.

"The actions depicted in the video took place during a counter-insurgency operation in the vicinity of Sandala, Musa Qala District in Helmand Province, Afghanistan on or about July 27, 2011," the Pentagon said, adding that the three marines pleaded guilty to non-judicial punishment as a result of an agreement, noting that the names of the three marines would not be released.

All three were members of third battalion, second marine regiment (3/2) or in units that were attached to 3/2 during their deployment.

According to the Pentagon, a non-commissioned officer pleaded guilty to violating a lawful general order, by wrongfully posing for an unofficial photograph with human casualties; urinating on the body of a deceased Taliban soldier, a conduct which was prejudicial to good order and discipline.

Another non-commissioned officer pleaded guilty to violating a lawful general order, by wrongfully posing for an unofficial photograph with human casualties and wrongfully video recording the incident, a conduct which was also prejudicial to good order and discipline.

A staff non-commissioned officer pleaded guilty to violating a lawful general order, by failing to report the mistreatment of human casualties by other marines and making a false official statement to a Naval Criminal Investigative Service investigator concerning his knowledge of the video of the incident.

Lalit K Jha in Washington
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