User:Brittany/Leaked documents reveal secret torture prison
Monday, April 4, 2011
Whilst hundreds of Iraqi families are left wondering where their loved ones have been taken, over 280 Iraqi prisoners were shuffled to a secret torture jail in Muthanna, North-West of Baghdad, secret government documents obtained by Human Rights Watch reveal. The documents uncover elite Security Forces under the power of the military office of Iraqi Prime Minister, Nuri Al- Maliki brutally torturing detainees, forbidding family visits and denying them access to lawyers. Many prisoners suspected of terrorism continue to be physically and psychologically tortured in horrific conditions, in the secret prison.
The reports also disclose interviews conducted by Human Rights Watch with detainees, revealing the degrading and inhumane mistreatment that prisoners suffered at the hands of 56th Brigade also known as the Baghdad Brigade. Detainees said that they were blindfolded and hung upside down, deprived of air by covering their faces with dirty plastic bags to cut air supply, kicked, whipped, viciously beaten multiple times till unconsciousness and given electric shocks on their genitals to awake the prisoners.
The deputy director of the Middle East for Human Rights Watch, Joe Stork told The New York Times, that the atrocities discovered were somewhat a "norm in Muthanna." Immediate and meticulous investigation needs to be conducted by the Iraqi government, said Mr. Stork. However, by the looks of things the Iraqi government appears to be making no such moves and have slammed Human Rights Watch, accusing them of having political agendas, in an effort to deny the existence of the torture prison.
The documents also uncovered that interrogators undertook routine and systematic torture, forcing detainees to sign false confessions linking them to terrorist activities and support.“Abu Gharib was a picnic compared to this," said Sheik Abdullah Humedi, a Sunni Arab tribal leader in Nineveh.
In one of the 18 documents leaked, a letter written to PM Nuri Al-Maliki, pleads with him to stop preventing family visits and detainee’s right to lawyers, arguing that such hindrance “meets neither legal nor humanitarian standards.”
The secret government documents furthermore exposed that prison inspectors were forbidden to visit particular parts of the secret jail, adding further confirmation that mistreatment of detainees within the walls of the prison was taking place under the supervision of security forces. The inspectors were due to conduct inspections on the prisoners, but just days before the inspection the detainees were dragged to the secret jail.
The Iraqi government has denied any wrong doing and refuses to acknowledge that the exposure of the secret torture jail destabilizes the Iraqi government’s guarantee to their people to value and uphold the rule of law. The Iraqi government's failure to keep their promise of upholding the rule of law is just one of the latest debacles by the government. Amid all this controversy, the country of Iraq is currently suffering at the hands of the Maliki government, after thousands of Iraqis took to the streets to protest for basic human rights like electricity, employment and financial welfare. Rather than meeting the peoples basic demands, the Maliki government is too caught up in trying to protect their secret torture prison.
- Human Rights Watch. "Iraq: Secret Jail Uncovered in Baghdad" — , 1 February 2011
- 'Blue Dog'. "Report: Human Rights Watch report reveals Iraq's ongoing tortures and abuses" — , March 21, 2011
- Sam Dagher. "Report Details Torture at Secret Baghdad Prison" — , April 27 2010