SYDNEY: An Australian former soldier was arrested on Monday over allegations that he murdered a man while deployed in Afghanistan, part of a long-running investigation into war crimes.

The arrest comes more than two years after a damning internal investigation found 39 civilians and prisoners had been “unlawfully killed” by Australian elite special forces. A 41-year-old veteran was expected to be charged with a war crime and could face life in prison if found guilty, Australian Federal Police said.

“It will be alleged he murdered an Afghan man while deployed to Afghanistan with the Australian Defence Force,” police said in a statement.

Public broadcaster ABC reported the charges related to the shooting of a man in 2012 in the southern Afghanistan province of Uruzgan.

A 2020 inquiry revealed allegations of summary executions, body count competitions and torture by Australian forces, and recommended police investigate 19 people.

Published in Dawn, March 21st, 2023

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