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US hands control of Bagram prison to Afghanistan

The United States has handed over control of the controversial Bagram prison, north of the capital Kabul, to the Afghan government.

Afghanistan shooting us troops 2012 3 12Enlarge
US soldiers pray during the an anniversary ceremony of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 on September 11, 2011 at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan. Ten years after the 9/11 attacks in the United States and after almost a decade war in Afghanistan, American soldiers paid their respects in a solemn observance of the tragic day. (John Moore/AFP/Getty Images)

The United States has handed over control of the controversial Bagram prison, north of the capital Kabul, to the Afghan government, Agence France Presse reported.

Three thousand prisoners, including Taliban fighters and terrorism suspects, were this morning transferred to Afghan authorities following an official handover ceremony.

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At least 50 foreigners were being held at the prison, mostly from Pakistan, however the handover agreement that was signed six months ago does not cover the question of non-Afghan prisoners.

In addition, AFP reported that authorities have yet to resolve disagreements over the fate of hundreds of inmates at the prison, which is has been involved in several prisoner abuse allegations.

Two Afghans were beaten to death by US soldiers at the prison a decade ago while, as GlobalPost reported, in early 2012 American soldiers burnt the Quran at Bagram, leading to riots across the country.

Some detainees whose fate hangs in the balance are being held at the Parwan Detention Facility, outside the Bagram US airbase north of Kabul.

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The handover is said to be symbolic, ahead of the withdrawal of NATO forces from Afghanistan at the end of 2014, the BBC reported.

It’s news site described the prison as “Afghanistan's Guantanamo,” adding that Washington would retain control over some of the detainees.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/afghanistan/120910/us-hands-control-bagram-prison-afghanistan