Trump pardon violates international law - UN

U.S. President Donald Trump’s recent pardon of four American men violated U.S. obligations under international law, U.N. human rights experts said on Wednesday.

The four were convicted of killing Iraqi civilians while working as contractors in 2007.

Nicholas Slatten was convicted of first-degree murder, while Paul Slough, Evan Liberty and Dustin Heard were convicted of voluntary and attempted manslaughter, over the incident in which U.S. contractors opened fire in a Baghdad square and killed 14 unarmed Iraqi civilians.

The four contractors worked for the private security firm Blackwater, which is owned by the brother of Trump’s education secretary.

The pardons were strongly criticized by many in the United States.

General David Petraeus and Ryan Crocker, respectively commander of U.S. forces and U.S. ambassador in Iraq at the time of the incident, called Trump’s pardons QUOTE “hugely damaging, an action that tells the world that American’s abroad can commit the most heinous crimes with impunity.”

The U.N. experts said the Geneva Conventions oblige states to hold war criminals accountable for their crimes, even when they act as private security contractors.