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Hit and Run author seeks more information

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/04/2017

One of the authors of the book Hit and Run is back in Afghanistan looking for more information to back up allegations the SAS were involved in civilian deaths.

War correspondent Jon Stephenson, who co-authored the book with Nicky Hager, says "a lot of people" have told him they have more information.

"I'm going to be talking to those people and assessing that information and seeing whether I can put it before the public," he told RNZ on Wednesday.

"We are continuing to pursue leads and there's a lot of information still to come."

Prime Minister Bill English on Monday ruled out an inquiry into allegations in the book that SAS troops led a raid on two villages which left six civilians dead and 15 wounded.

He said he could reconsider his decision if solid evidence came to light about civilian deaths.

The Defence Force had previously said New Zealand troops were never in the villages identified in the book, and that the operation took place about 2km away.

That operation resulted in the deaths of nine insurgents and the Defence Force has acknowledged civilian deaths could have been caused by a faulty helicopter gunsight.

However, Mr English said there was no evidence of civilian deaths and after watching a video of the operation he was sure the troops acted professionally under the rules of engagement.

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