Australia military investigating Taliban detainee 'mistreatment' claims Abigail Salisbury at 4:32 PM ET
[JURIST] The Australian Defence Force [official website] is investigating claims by four Taliban members detained following the death of an Australian soldier in Afghanistan that they were mistreated during their time in custody, Australian media reported Thursday. The allegations were reported by a senior Afghan commander who spoke of "mistreatment" of prisoners by Australian troops. ABC Australia has more.
Australia currently has slightly over 1000 troops committed to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force [official website] under its Operation Slipper [official backgrounder]. Earlier this week the Melbourne Agereported other complaints by one-time Australian and Dutch detainees that they were beaten after being handed over to local Afghan security forces. Similar claims have dogged the Canadian military [JURIST news archive], which subsequently renegotiated its prisoner transfer agreement with Afghan authorities. In a May 2 statement, Stephen Smith, Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, denounced torture and announced the steps Australia is taking to accede to the UN Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture [text], previously rejected by the government of Prime Minister John Howard.
Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible, ad-free format.