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Cable 521: 2006 US Embassy Report on Human Rights Abuses at Iraqi National Police Detention Facility

Cable 521: 2006 US Embassy Report on Human Rights Abuses at Iraqi National Police Detention Facility

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Published by Andres
This is a 2006 US embassy report on widespread human rights abuses occurring at an Iraqi National Police detention facility in central Baghdad.
This is a 2006 US embassy report on widespread human rights abuses occurring at an Iraqi National Police detention facility in central Baghdad.

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Published by: Andres on Sep 17, 2011
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09/18/2011

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P 100421Z JUN 06FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDADTO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4991C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 03 BAGHDAD001960SUBJECT: SEVERE ABUSE AT MINISTRY OF INTERIOR SITE4 DETENTION FACILITY
REF: A. BAGHDAD 1241¶B. BAGHDAD 1019¶C. BAGHDAD 4921 05¶D. BAGHDAD 5020 05Classified By: Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad forreasons 1.4 (a) and (d).1. (C) SUMMARY: On May, a joint U.S.-Iraqiinspection of the "Site 4" Iraqi National Police(INP) detention complex discovered more than 1,400detainees in squalid, cramped conditions. Forty-one detainees interviewed had bruising and lash-marks consistent with violent physical abuse.Thirty-seven juveniles were illegally held at thefacility, many alleging sexual abuse. Ministry ofInterior (MOI) officials appear to have beencomfortable engaging in large-scale violenceagainst detainees at a well-known Baghdad facilitythat had been officially inspected twice sinceDecember 2005 (and visited unofficially half-a-dozen times by Post), indicating that MOI's
 
capture-and-confess culture is Unabashedly tolerantof physical abuse. According to latest informationfrom the Civilian Police Assistance Training Team(CPATT), several other MOI officers have been"detained but not arrested" -- a not-uncommonpractice at MOI. Ambassador briefed PM Maliki onthe size and seriousness of the Site 4 abuse onJune 5. Malik was, in his words, "appalled" atwhat happened there. END SUMMARY.
-----------------EVIDENCE OF ABUSE-----------------
2. (SBU) On May 30, a third joint U.S.-Iraqiinspection of the "Site 4" INP detention complex,located in central Baghdad, discovered more than1,400 detainees in two separate facilities held insqualid, cramped conditions not uncommon in MOICommando detention facilities. Forty-one detaineesinterviewed had bruising and lash-marks consistentwith violent physical abuse. Thirty-sevenjuveniles were illegally held at the facility, manyalleging sexual abuse.¶3. (SBU) On June 1, the juvenile detainees wereremoved from Site 4 and transported temporarily toan MOI INP facility at Muthanna Airfield. Post isseeking an order from the Higher Juridical Council(HJC) authorizing their transfer to the Ministry ofLabor and Social Affairs (MOLSA) juvenile detentionfacility at Tobchi. Forty-five adult detaineesshowing marks of abuse were medically-screened,treated, and transferred to the "Site 1" INP
 
facility. An additional ninety were transported toan INP facility at FOB Justice.¶4. (SBU) On June 5, Post and MNF-I returned toSite 4 (which is now visited daily by MNF-I'sSpecial Police Training Team (SpiTT)) in support ofthree Iraqi judges tasked by the HJC with takingpossession of all detainee files on site. (Thesefiles will be stored in HJC offices while HJC staffmatch files to a Site 4 roster passed to the HJC byPost and MNF-I). MOI personnel initially resistedsurrendering the files to the HJC, but afterseveral hours' argument they complied uponpresentation of a written judicial order.¶5. (SBU) Follow-up inspections and interviews byMNF-I have recorded allegations of physical abusefrom 315 detainees, many of whom identify the samegroup of five to six MOI officials as theperpetrators of abuse at the Site 4 facility. Anumber of detainees have offered to testify incourt against their abusers; Post and MNF-I are incontact with judicial officials on this matter.MOI is rumored to have "detained but not arrested"the Site 4 Commander and a handful of unnamed otherpersonnel.
--------------------------------------CENTRALIZATION AND SEVERE OVERCROWDING--------------------------------------
¶6. (SBU) As noted in reftels, severe overcrowdingis characteristic of many MOI INP detention

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