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Blair Says He Learned Only Recently Of Iraqi Abuses

10 May 2004 -- British Prime Minister Tony Blair today said he was unaware until "the last few days" of charges by the Red Cross that British and U.S. troops had abused Iraqi prisoners.

Blair said his government will release sections of a report by the International Comittee of the Red Cross that reported the abuses to government officials earlier this year.

Blair's remarks come as the U.K. and U.S. governments are under increasing international pressure over photographs of Iraqi prisoners being abused in Iraq by soldiers.

Blair apologized yesterday for any abuses of Iraqi prisoners committed by British soldiers. In the United States, the White House issued a similar apology last week.