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Monday, March 30, 2009

US opens another prison for Iraqis

Mon, 30 Mar 2009 07:27:17 GMT | PressTV

The American military has inaugurated a 27-million-dollar prison in northern Iraq which is capable of holding 3,000 detainees.

According to an American military statement on Sunday, the jail was built by the US Corps of Engineers at Chamchamal in the autonomous Kurdish region, 70 kilometers south of Sulaimaniyah, in the space of two years.

The statement further said that the prison was built on the site of a federal jail that had existed under the regime of the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

The existing facility had to be redesigned "to make it a modern correctional facility that complies with both international and US Coalition requirements for the humane treatment of inmates," the statement added.

The new prison will have a staff of 1,200, including a large force of guards to house 2,000 medium security inmates and 1,000 high security prisoners.

Fort Suze, 20 kilometers northwest of Sulaimaniyah, is another federal prison which holds 1,500 detainees, among them 260 foreigners, most of whom are accused of "terrorism" and illegal entry to Iraq.

Independent sources in the media report as many as 30,000 Iraqi prisoners are in US military prisons inside oil-rich Iraq.

The US military has aroused intense condemnation from the international community over its mistreatment and abuse of Iraqi prisoners some of whom incarcerated without any charges.

In May 2004, leaked pictures of the notorious Abu-Ghraib prison scandal showed US military personnel in Baghdad subjecting Iraqi detainees to humiliating and degrading treatment, thus triggering an international outcry against the human rights violations.

Abu-Ghraib prison is located on the western outskirts of the Iraqi capital Baghdad.

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