KANKASH: Afghanistan's Widespread Prison Torture
Tuesday 30 September 2014

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Afghan officials are divided over a report claiming systemic torture is used in Afghanistan's prisons, with some accepting the findings of the United Nations Assistance Mission to Afghanistan (Unama) report while others emphatically deny it.

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Musa Mahmoodi, head of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission, accepted the conclusions in the report released late Sunday night.

"We confirm the torture in Afghan detention centers," he said in an interview with TOLOnews. "The government should prevent such acts."

However, the Ministry of Interior and National Directorate of Security (NDS), both of which have authority over prisons and detainees, rejected the report.

"The Ministry of Interior dismisses the allegation of mistreatment, systematic torture, beating with pipes or cables, forced confessions, hanging and other types of torture mentioned in the report. We are ready to investigate about all the above allegations together with Unama," Deputy Interior Minister Abdul Rahman Rahman said at a press conference in Kabul.

The authorities are still torturing prisoners, such as hanging them by their wrists and beating them with cables, the UN report said, a year after it first documented the abuse and won government promises of detention reform.

It said that more than half of the 635 detainees interviewed by UN investigators said they had been ill-treated or tortured.

In this edition of Kankash, host Omid Farooq looks at this subject with the following guests:

• Aminullah Habibi, Isaf senior adviser

• Sediq Seddiqi, spokesman for Ministry of Interior

• Musa Mahmoodi, Executive Director, Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission 


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