Group: Afghan Prisoners Abuse 'Systemic'

Prisoners in U.S. custody in Afghanistan suffer “systemic” mistreatment, Human Rights Watch claimed Thursday, calling for a network of secretive jails dogged by allegations of assault and sexual abuse to be opened to outside scrutiny.

In light of the widening scandal over prisoner abuse in Iraq, the rights group also urged the United States to finally clear up the deaths of three Afghans in custody since late 2002. “The United States has shown that it can’t police its own prisons,” said John Sifton, New York-based Human Rights Watch’s Afghanistan expert said in a statement. Rights activists have long complained of what they say are consistent allegations of abuse in American holding facilities across the country since the fall of the Taliban in late 2001. Full Story

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