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British soldiers arrested over fake pictures

LONDON, MAY 19. British military police yesterday arrested a number of soldiers in connection with the faked photographs of British soldiers supposedly torturing Iraqi prisoners.

It is understood that up to four people are being questioned. The London-based Daily Mirror, which printed the photographs, denied it had given the names of the soldiers to the military authorities. A Mirror source said: ``They haven't come from us.'' The tabloid has come under increasing pressure to reveal the identities of those behind the hoax, which led to the sacking of its editor, Piers Morgan.

The U.K. Ministry of Defence refused to give details of the arrests. A spokesman said that nobody had been charged. The net has been closing in on those responsible for the hoax pictures after investigators identified the truck the supposed abuse was taking place in and established that it had never been to Iraq.

As well as allowing the Government and army chiefs to say conclusively that the images, which sent shock waves through the Arab world, were fake, it gave the military leverage to put pressure on the Mirror to reveal its sources.

Earlier this week, the Mirror's acting editor, Des Kelly, said he would resist moves to force him to hand over the names.

Guardian Newspapers Limited 2004

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