The family of a soldier from Wythenshawe who was killed in Iraq can bring damages claims against the Government, the Supreme Court ruled today.
Private Lee Ellis was killed in February 2006 when his snatch Landrover was caught in a roadside bomb.
His relatives want to sue for negligence and to make claims under human rights legislation. Supreme Court justices announced today that they can do both. The family along with others started legal action as a result of the deaths of a number of British soldiers following the American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Their victory at the UK's highest court follows a hearing in London in February. The decision means that claims can now proceed to trial.
The issues before the Supreme Court were originally considered at the High Court and then by the Court of Appeal. In June 2011 a High Court judge in London said relatives could bring negligence claims but not claims under human rights legislation. In October 2012 appeal judges came to the same conclusions.
Relatives say the Ministry of Defence (MoD) failed to provide armoured vehicles or equipment which could have saved lives, and should pay compensation. The MoD says decisions about battlefield equipment are for politicians and military commanders.
The Supreme Court justices analysed three central legal issues:
:: Whether British soldiers killed during military operations abroad were within the jurisdiction of the UK for the purposes of Article 1 - which protects the right to life - of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
:: Whether the MoD owed a duty to the deceased soldiers pursuant to Article 2 - which imposes a duty on authorities to protect the right to life by law - of the ECHR.
:: Whether complaints of negligence are covered by the doctrine of combat immunity and whether it would be fair to impose a duty of care on the MoD.
Shubhaa Srinivasan, from law firm Leigh Day, who represents all the Challenger claimants, said: