Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Human Rights Watch: Kurds abusing detainees, including torture

Above: A policeman in Mosul guards 'detainees' in April. Under emergency powers, arrest may be made upon suspicion, and no trial need ever be held, nor the detainees ever released.

Kurdish security forces in northern Iraq routinely torture detainees with methods including electric shock and hold them in overcrowded facilities without formal charges or access to legal aid, a human rights group said Tuesday.

The Human Rights Watch report -- based on interviews conducted from April to October 2006 with more than 150 detainees -- demanded a comprehensive overhaul of detention practices in the Kurdish region and urged an independent body to investigative claims of torture by Washington's closest allies in Iraq...

The Human Rights Watch report said abuses have been committed against suspects detained by Kurdish security personnel and others taken in U.S.-Iraq raids, including suspected insurgents. The report listed Kurdish violations of both international human rights law and Iraqi codes.

"Kurdistan security forces routinely subject detainees to torture and other mistreatment," said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director for Human Rights Watch.

Read the rest at the LA Times

Related Link:
Iraq still denying Red Cross access to prisoners

Related Link:
Perspective: Hundreds Disappear Into the Black Hole of the Kurdish Prison System in Iraq