Court martial for soldiers over deaths
THE commonwealth is seeking wide suppression orders at the upcoming court martial of two Army Reserve soldiers charged with manslaughter in Afghanistan.
The court martial, set down for July 11, relates to a February 12, 2009 incident, when members of the Special Operations Task Group, operating in Oruzgan Province, undertook a compound clearance operation.
Six civilian fatalities resulted from the operation.
Yesterday in Sydney, Judge Advocate Brigadier Ian Westwood began a hearing on pre-trial issues including interim applications for nonpublication orders.
The reserve soldiers, a lance corporal and a sergeant, have been charged with manslaughter.
In the alternative, they are charged with two counts of dangerous conduct with negligence as to consequence.
Lawyers want orders including protecting the two men’s identities and the judge advocate agreed to refer to them as the first and second defendants for now.