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Spain Drops Murder Charges Against US Soldiers

Spain's National Court on Tuesday dropped murder charges filed against three US soldiers over the death of a Spanish camera man during the Iraq war, reported CNN.

Cameraman Jose Couso, who was working for Spain's Telecinco television station at the time, was killed after a US tank fired at Baghdad's Palestine Hotel, which was then used by foreign journalists in Baghdad. Another cameraman working for Reuters news agency was also killed in the incident.

Ruling that the case was being definitively dismissed, which implies that there is no further opportunity to appeal against the verdict, the court said that there was "insufficient evidence" to continue with the trial.

Earlier, a lower Spanish court had issued arrest warrants for Sgt Thomas Gibson, Cpt Philip Wolford and Lt-Col Philip De Camp of the US army, in 2005 and 2007, for the death of Jose Couso in April 2003.

Though the US officials ignored the two international arrest warrants saying that the firing was justified, the family of Jose Couso approached the Spanish courts to press charges.

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