U.S. Turns over Notorious Prison to Afghans…But Not Completely
U.S. officials have had second thoughts about completing the transfer of a military prison to Afghan authority, fearing the government will allow certain detainees to go free and rejoin the insurgency.
The Parwan detention facility, located at Bagram Air Base, was supposed to be officially turned over to Afghanistan’s military on Monday. A ceremony was organized to mark the occasion, but the U.S commander in charge, Lieutenant General Keith M. Huber, skipped the event. The U.S. embassy and the State Department also failed to send anyone.
The two sides reached an agreement six months ago for the transfer of Parwan, which included the Afghans taking control of about 3,000 prisoners. But no understanding has been reached over what to do with 600 newly captured prisoners, who currently remain under American control.
The U.S. is also holding onto 30 previously captured detainees that Washington wants to remain behind bars indefinitely without trial. Afghan commanders apparently have not offered assurances that the prisoners would not be released.
To Learn More:
Issues Linger as Afghans Take Control of a Prison (by Rod Nordland, New York Times)
U.S. Puts Transfer of Detainees to Afghans on Hold (by Graham Bowley, New York Times)
U.S. to Retain Role as a Jailer in Afghanistan (by Charlie Savage and Graham Bowley, New York Times)
Afghan Government Demands Obama Turn over Prisoners Held at U.S. Base (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)
U.S. Prison in Afghanistan Has 10 Times as Many Prisoners as Guantánamo (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov)
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