A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Iraq cabinet approves Abu Ghraib prison rebuilding plan

[JURIST] The Iraqi government announced plans Wednesday to rebuild Abu Ghraib prison [JURIST news archive], where US military guards were photographed abusing Iraqi prisoners [JURIST report]. Government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said the Iraqi Cabinet [official website, in Arabic] had approved the Defense Ministry's proposal to reopen the prison west of Baghdad. US authorities emptied Abu Ghraib of its final 2,000 prisoners and returned it to Iraqi control [JURIST reports] in late 2006. The new Abu Ghraib is to incorporate a museum depicting crimes committed during the regime of Saddam Hussein [JURIST news archive], when the prison was feared as a site of torture and executions. A timeline for the project has not yet been established. AFP has more. Reuters has additional coverage.

A Human Rights Watch report asserted that US commanders authorized widespread torture of prisoners [JURIST report] during and even after photos of guards abusing inmates surfaced in the media. Former Abu Ghraib commander Janis Karpinski said in 2005 that former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld [JURIST news archive] personally signed a memorandum authorizing extreme interrogation techniques [JURIST report]. Several US soldiers were convicted of abuse at Abu Ghraib, including former US Army Reserve Staff Sgt. Ivan "Chip" Frederick, who was paroled [JURIST report] in late 2007 after serving three years in prison. The conviction of the only commissioned officer charged in connection with the abuse was annulled [JURIST report] early this year. A number of lawsuits are pending against US military contractors for alleged abuses at Abu Ghraib, including one filed this July [JURIST report] by four former prisoners.

About Paper Chase

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 format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.