The Prisons spread in Iraq after the US invasion, The Americans established many of them inside bases and camps, at the same time successive governments in Iraq resorted to public and secret prisons, In November 2005, the Americans discovered what was known as Al Jadriya prison in Baghdad and found detainees who were brutally tortured, and many of them disappeared.
In the era of former Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, the number of secret prisons has increased, and the secret honor prison has been revealed inside the Green Zone and AlMuthanna airport prison, as well as detainees who have miraculously left many secret prisons in Baghdad and other cities.
After 2003, the Iraqi authorities relied on what is known as the “secret informer” because of the injustice of hundreds, even thousands, who did not know their way until years later, Some of them do not know their fate yet, either killed during sectarian fighting Or in secret prisons Which are spoken by international organizations.
Amnesty International revealed the existence of secret detention centers in Iraq, referring to the extremely harsh conditions suffered by detainees inside, which is put to the test assertions Haider al-Abadi government to respect human rights.
And detained in these detention centers Iraqis from the Sunni areas were arrested with suspicion, the great suspicion is that they were in areas where government forces regained control after they were in the hands of a terrorist organization.
Amnesty International’s Director of the Middle East and North Africa Program, Philip Luther, says the detainees are in extremely harsh conditions and that detention centers are overcrowded so that detainees cannot sleep.
US and Iraqi public prisons
- Abu Ghraib in the Abu Ghraib area west of Baghdad, the most famous American prisons, closed by US forces after the famous torture scandal.
- Boca Prison in Umm Qasr, southern Iraq, is the largest American prison and accommodates more than 20,000 detainees.
- Camp Cropper near Baghdad International Airport and accommodates more than 4000 detainees.
- Sousa prison in Sulaymaniyah, northern Iraq, and accommodates more than 2000 detainees.
- Abu Ghraib reopened recently after being developed and rehabilitated by the Iraqi Ministry of Justice.
- 36 official prisons in various governorates, including the provinces of the Kurdistan region.
- Prisons and detention centers belonging to the Ministries of Interior, Defense, National Security and the Intelligence Service.
Classification of detainees according to the conditions of their detention:
- Prisoners arrested during the military operations from 20/3/2003 to 9/4/2003.
- The wanted list of 55, the first of which is the late President Saddam Hussein.
- Detainees accused of resisting the occupation or cooperating with the resistance.
- Detainees for criminal reasons.
The secret informer
The Iraqis began several years ago they talk about the label “secret informer ” on the widest scale, While judicial sources have refused to be considered legal, In which others saw that he was behind the arrest of thousands, especially with the adoption of US forces.
Detainees say the mysterious informer can write a small piece of paper accusing any Iraqi of “terrorism” and somehow conveying it to US forces, who in turn rush into his house and arrest him. According to eyewitnesses, the experiment was transferred to the Iraqi government, ”What the informer says turns into immediate arrest warrants ”Noting that this has caused widespread suspicion among relatives, friends and neighbors.
That the phenomenon of secret informants did not exist in the past Iraqi courts, it spread after the invasion; «because the US forces used in the arrest of thousands of Iraqis, who proved through the investigation of the invalidity of information received from secret informants”. And that «about 98% of Iraqi detainees in US and government prisons are the victim of the secret informer whose information is often malicious”.
The accused cannot prove his innocence; because the person who told the authorities about him is a “ghost”. And that US forces resorted to this method «but all the evidence confirms that the resort of any authority to the secret detective is the result of weak power in the control of security, and the detention of thousands of innocent people for long periods without charge is questioned the presence of that informant originally ».The use of a secret agent on this wide scale is an indication of a major security flaw.
The secret prisons of the Ministry of the Interior
The American forces are behind the secret prisons or at least ignore it, and tried to show to the world that it may not be satisfied what the security forces are doing against Sunnis in Iraq, So it stormed one of these secret prisons of the Iraqi Interior Ministry during the days of its minister Bayan Jabr Solagh, Where the US forces found in this prison, called «Jadriya prison”, About 170 prisoners from the Sunni community, and they have signs of torture and humiliation, It is then assumed that the perpetrator of this criminal act, But none of this has ever happened, and most of the investigations that come to be approved disappear overnight, Especially that criminalize militias or political parties and influential organizations in government, Crimes, most of which are specialized in kidnapping, murder and theft, And that the file of Jadriya prison was found about 170 Iraqis, and disappeared in difficult circumstances, and disappeared file of another prison revealed in the area of Habibiyah east of the capital, and administered by the investigations – an organization called «revenge» belonging to the Badr Organization according to the story of the detainees.
In 2005, a secret prison was discovered in Baghdad containing 6,000 Iraqi detainees directly supervised by Interior Minister Bayan Jabr Solagh, Iraqi officers and other members of the Iranian secret service. The secret prison, which includes 6,000 detainees, mostly belonging to the Sunni community, was arrested during the period of Interior Minister Bayan Jabr Solagh. There are 2,000 detainees from the city of Madaen near Baghdad, 1600 from al Dora area in Baghdad, 1000 from Tarmiyah and 800 from Mahmudiyah while the others from other areas including Baldrouz in the province of Diyala and Latifiyah south of Baghdad. The detention center is located in the Al Nisour Square in Baghdad. At the Peace Palace Hospitality, consists of four halls, where brutal acts of torture are carried out by electrical equipment such as a “drill”. This is assisted by Iranian and other Iraqi intelligence officers, led by Major General Rashid Felaih, the Minister’s Adviser, Brigadier General Adnan Thabet, Mahdi al-Gharawi, commander of the Maintaining order forces. And that the torture included the removal of nails, cauterize the bodies by electric current and severe beatings on the limbs. The confirmation of the issue of the existence of secret prisons resulted from the incident that took place on the night of October 2008 in the capital Baghdad after a major fire in a building known as the Ministry of the Interior (Iraq) and on the eighth floor specifically, Which fire is spread for many of the rooms on the eighth floor, according to eyewitnesses, the smoke rising from the building has been seen from several places of the capital Baghdad, the government was committed to silence in that time, After the discovery of the matter And out of control A spokesman for the so-called Interior Ministry (Iraqi) Major General Abdul Karim Khalaf told reporters that ”The fire that broke out in the corridors of the restaurant was the result of gas leak and was extinguished half an hour after the outbreak and there were minor material damage within the furniture of the restaurant”. This statement is far from the truth , And what happened ,The smoke was very thick black As it leaves the windows of the building because of oxygen gas cylinders and acetylene used in the cutting of solid metals used in factories and large construction sites and do not need the Ministry of Interior for these materials only one thing is that these cylinders were used in the torture of detainees and Iraqi prisoners in the cellars of the Iraqi Ministry of Interior during interrogations The detainees are cut off their hands and feet with these very dangerous substances. And the explosion was in the unit of the Special Security Service ((Special Crimes Unit Badr Organization)) which contains rooms and torture rooms that kill the Iraqi citizen. From time to time, one of the scandals of these secret prisons, such as the scandal of the death chambers in al Kadhimiya prison during the period of the Maliki government, revealed by the British newspaper The Independent And did not respond to that incident ,Neither the Maliki government nor the Ministry of al Asadi responded in that time. And during the Maliki government five secret prisons were discovered in the areas of al Kadhimiya, New Baghdad, Karrada, Jadriya and the airport The detainees are being killed by militias backed by al-Maliki and that “the majority of detainees in those prisons Were not brought before to the courts, Or passing through the archives of the Ministry of Justice, They are not included in the archives of the Iraqi Red Cross and the Human Rights Commission to be missing if they are killed, and their relatives do not know where they have been since their arrest. ” These are random examples of these detention centers, all of which use the term “prisons or secret prisons ”This term is a felony in itself, and the Ministry of the Interior refrains from providing statements about its detention centers, cells and names of detainees and detainees without any investigative papers or charges. It is certain that there are people held in secret places belonging to the Ministry of the Interior, who are subjected to daily routine torture. They are ready to confess any crime in order to escape the intolerable torture practiced by the Interior Ministry executioners of the Badr Brigade members who are known for the torture they received from Iranian intelligence. It is reported that Shia militias to cooperate in the kidnapping of a Sunni citizen and then ask for ransom from his family and after receiving the ransom, which amounts to thousands of dollars, Sometimes do Then Sell The kidnapped To the prisons of the Ministry of the Interior ,The organizations and committees concerned with the affairs of the detainees show from time to time the existence of halls to imprison detainees with names other than their real names and These halls are called “White Hall”, “Red Hall”, “Black Hall” and others.
Secret prisons belonging to the Shiite militias
These secret prisons are run by Militias loyal to Iran and 90% of the detainees are Sunni in the various areas where Shiite militias have participated in the war against ISIS, the most recent of which is the Nineveh province, centered in Mosul, passing through Diyala, Salaheddin and Anbar, There have been many testimonies of parents about the disappearance of their relatives, Or killed during interrogation by the militias. In the city of Fallujah alone, a large city located within the province of Anbar in western Iraq and belongs to the Sunni community, The United Nations has already announced the loss of 740 men and children after they were detained by the popular militia during the battle to recapture the city last year. Detainees in the armed forces are no better off than prisoners in the hands of militias, where Iraq lacks proper detention centers,It also lacks the means of professional investigation that can discriminate between innocents and those who are really involved in joining to ISIS and fighting side by side.
Government neglect of the secret prisons issue has led to the existence of special houses and camps where innocent people have been held for years without judgement. There are a number of prisons in secret houses or camps that are supposed to be allocated to protect citizens rather than abducting them and imprisoning them in a manner that is not different from the style ISIS In the kidnapping of civilians and not to disclose their fate. The phenomenon of secret prisons in Iraq is not limited to the emergence of the ISIS and the war against it, but it was preceded by years, and was associated with the emergence of armed militias led by influential figures who have political and even religious powers that make them above the rule of law.
Since 2003 it has been exposed Thousands of accused of belonging to the Baath Party And Saddam Hussein’s regime to kidnappings, arrests and killings by militias, in a process of revenge and the filtration of large-scale political and sectarian accounts, much like what is happening today against Iraqis accused – without evidence – of belonging to ISIS organization Or sympathy with it . The public appearance of militias in public spaces and their control of some areas, including inside the capital, Baghdad, and disputed by the state authorities through patrols, checkpoints, arrests and interrogations will remain the main obstacle to restoring the prestige of the Iraqi state and extending the rule of law to all. And that interesting information indicates a presence of 34 special prisons belonging to armed Shiite militias spread in Iraq from north to south, and these prisons are not subject to any authority other than the authority of these armed militias. According to this information, these prisons comprise between 2,600 and 3,500 Iraqi detainees, and these prisons belong to the Badr, Dawa Party, Asaib Ahl al-Haq, the Iraqi Hizballah, the Sayyid al-Shuhada Movement and the Militia Ahrar Iraq », and the responsibility of These detention centers are by one or more than a security and religious official of those militias, including Iraqis and Iranians, And other information confirmed the extradition of more than 200 detainees and an Iraqi kidnapped to Iran, and some of them detained since the entry of US forces to Baghdad.
And that there is serious information about the names and functions of Iraqi detainees who have been handed over to Iran At their request to be judgement lawfully in Iranian secret courts, and that the majority of those who refuse to obey orders were filtrated, The Iranian goal in this regard is the exploitation of detainees in secret prisons with special operations such as bombings in neighboring countries or acts of terrorist sabotage as executors are not Iranian, there are five detainees in the area of Al-Hbariyah, in Nukhayb, managed by «Hezbollah», and this district is disputed between Karbala and Anbar , There is also the Abu Gharak camp in Hilla under the direction of Hezbollah, the detention of Razzazah management Asaib Ahl al-Haq, the detention center of the channel managed by Rasalion Brigades, the detention center in Khalis under the management of the Badr Organization, And that the number of detainees varies in these prisons,There were about 1208 detainees in Al-Razazah detention camp. The Abu Gharak detention center includes 729 detainees, from Babylon and Anbar to Diyala. The map of the secret prisons,Where many of these prisons are deployed in Diyala, especially after powerful militias have taken control of the street and filtration operations have begun for the safe civilians. Diyala has witnessed repeated kidnappings and systematic killings of many people in the province. A number of armed groups and militias have power. More than the state, and threaten the civil peace.
The criminal operations witnessed in some areas of the province is evidence of full control of militias in most areas of the province,Some militias have prevented the prime minister And the President of Parliament from entering the district of Muqdadiya, After the militias blew up 9 mosques for the Sunnis there.
Residents of Diyala remember the testimonies of kidnapped kidnappers who were freed with ransom, Or security operations, indicating that there are many prisons and places of detention controlled by militias,Or affiliated with the security forces took advantage of positions of power,Where they have detained and liquidated many innocent people, with bloody crimes that no one can deny.And that during the raid of the security forces were found in homes have been many of the abductees inside the areas of Wajihiya and Abi Saida and Khalis, as well as orchards in the areas of Waqf.
Secret prisons belonging to the Militia Al-hashid al-shaabi
The Militia Al-hashid al-shaabi is only one of a large number of militias supported by the Iraqi government, some of which are officially funded, There is confirmed information in the video confirms the existence of violations amounting to war crimes committed by the militias, especially the popular crowd, which was founded by the fatwa of the Shiite cleric Ali al-Sistani and became a state within the state!!
There are now more than 50 militias in Iraq, Each of which has a special detention center and a flag raising, There is information confirming the execution of hundreds and burying them in mass graves in jerf alsakhar,and 250 were kidnapped in the Al alam area And the execution of 150 at Camp Ashraf by Badr forces.
Militias deliberately bargain with parents who may sell all they have to redeem their children. In checkpoint of al Razzaza (south of Falluja), which is controlled by Hezbollah militias, has escaped 65 of the 1,400 detainees. They spoke of «Shameful tragedies,Of shocked the detainees with electricity », according to what was published in the media at the time. They were subjected to brutal torture, and isolated men and youth were attacked by groups that beat them and insult them. There is certain information about the existence of prisons across the border, as the detainees, all of the Sunni Arabs from their places of residence in Diyala, Salah al- The tragedy does not stop at secret prisons, but information speaks of secret cellars inside public prisons such as the prisons of Kadhimiya and Taji, but what is more dangerous is the defense of Iraqi politicians about these prisons. Din and Anbar and the northern Hilla to Ahwaz in Iran to taste there types of torture.
(24) prisons in Baghdad, Babylon, Karbala, Basra, DhiQar and Diyala run by factions « Al-hashid al-shaabi », This number was announced by a report issued by a human rights organization, confirming the existence of at least 24 prisons Affiliated to the militias « Al-hashid al-shaabi »,spent dozens of detainees in torture,All of them Sunni Arabs,They are being arrested with campaigns of militia Al-hashid al-shaabi against different cities and towns, or through the liberation of cities from the control of ISIS.
that”These prisons are old government buildings or military bases of the army or private farms, Large houses,The victim usually does not stay inside for more than two or three months; It often ends with a dead body. ” It turns out that the leaders of the militias « Al-hashid al-shaabi » is the one who oversees these prisons,
All the detainees in these prisons are Sunni Arabs, And became a “ISIS” exploits in his weekly speeches to intimidate the Sunnis who reject him and flee from his regions, saying «stay in the land of succession is better than death in the prisons of militias»,Describing these prisons as “a new engine for spawning violence and revenge and the threat of civil coexistence among Iraqis.”There were also kidnappings in the Tharthar area, where “during this period, armed groups continue to kidnap civilians as they come from Anbar to Baghdad or return.”
The number of kidnapped has exceeded 1,200.The kidnappings are increasing after each liberation of an Iraqi city from the grip of the terrorist of ISIS , Where militias « Al-hashid al-shaabi » did a Retaliatory attacks against Sunni youth As happened with the city of Saqlawiyah when militias arrested young people, Where the number reached about (2000) kidnapped, And some of them found his body, and some of them disappeared to this day, There are secret prisons scattered in the areas of Salah al-Din and Samarra and areas near the liberated cities, and there are detention camps are caravans, and there are buildings of schools are not qualified turned into detention centers,There are many violations in the governorates of Mosul and Salah al-Din.Detainees were not registered, detained without investigation, without a prosecutor or by lawyers, and there were violations of the Kurdish, Al-hashid al –Yazidi and Shiite militias of Al-hashid al-shaabi in Tal Afar (west of Mosul).
And the violations are “Killings and kidnappings, and some of them graze cattle from villages near Tal Afar, summoning them on the pretext of giving information about ISIS, but they kidnap and kill some of them.” The Iraqi government “confirms the presence of radicals, but also confirms that the situation is good and there is no problem.” And other violations occurred in the outskirts of Baghdad, including “the kidnapping of 30 men in January 2016 in Tarmiyah, as the government agency entered and arrested 30 people, so the government directly accused of facilitating the passage of the kidnappers or at least to overlook them, especially since the fate of the kidnapped people is still unknown today”.
While for what is going on in Nasiriyah prison in southern Iraq is horrific violations against 7400 Iraqi detainees. According to information, the Popular Struggle militias control prison, and that death sentences are issued and executed in retaliation on the basis of secret informants’ statements confessions obtained under torture and threats of rape of relatives. According to the information, the head of the lawyer’s office in Nasiriyah lawyer Saleh Zuhairi resigned in protest against the failure of the Nasiriyah Court to allow lawyers to defend the defendants.
The Association of Muslim Scholars in Iraq has said that Iraqi forces killed 16 detainees with electric shocks in the prison of Nasiriyah province of Dhi Qar south of the country, explaining that the forces supervising the prison “claimed” that they died as a result of collective injuries to electric shock. The agency said in a statement that government forces prevented the families of the victims from meeting their detained sons under the pretext they take strict measures to prevent the escape of detainees.
Assassinations in Iraqi Prisons
Increasing the phenomenon of assassinations or executions inside the cells of Iraqi prisons, for inmates or detainees, usually carried out by armed groups or elements of the security services, who are supposed to be responsible for the protection of those prisons. With the similarity of its scenarios to a large extent between one incident and the other, beginning with the announcement of “the intrusion of an armed group to the prison firing at the inmates, killing a number of them, not less than twenty inmates. Then The Interior and Justice Ministries are preparing an investigation into the incident without finding results for this investigation. Therefore, it cannot be ascertained that they actually opened an investigation or put forward the presumptions of killing prisoners during their transfer or alleged that a terrorist attack targeted them. According to a local Iraqi organization, at least 800 inmates have been killed in the past two years, either inside the prison, during transport or in mysterious disappearances, after their bodies were found outside prisons.
While Haidar al-Abadi’s government does not dare to talk about the issue, despite the widespread phenomenon of assassinations and the filtration of prisoners in Iraq carried out by armed militias and members of Iraqi security. And elements of ” militias of Al-hashid al-shaabi ” threatened on the tongue of Aws al-Khafaji one of its leaders, breaking into prisons and the filtratation of all inmates, in response to the bombing of Karrada, in this regard, the leader of the militia, “Abu al-Fadl Abbas,” Aws al-Khafaji, “We will break into prisons and kill them With our hands a revenge for the dead Karrada ». The Ministries of Justice and Interior explain these crimes each time as “a sudden terrorist attack by the organization of (ISIS).” While the attackers did not break a prison door and did not kill a guard, they entered and executed the victims and went out very easily.
According to the latest Numbers, at least 800 detainees and prisoners in Iraqi prisons were killed in their cells or mysteriously disappeared, and their bodies were found in the landfills or public squares, since the beginning of last year, until today. According to documents, It is being filtered All victims systematically in prisons, Which led many of the relatives of the detainees to pay a bribe of up to $ 10,000, in exchange for the transfer of their sons detained to the prison of Sousse in Iraqi Kurdistan, to protect them from the daily assassinations or torture, which culminated in the end. Knowing that attacks on prisons are carried out after terrorist operations to «ISIS», targeting public areas that kill citizens, or after the issuance of a judicial acquittal of an accused, which is eliminated before the implementation of the police judicial order. The attacks are also occurring after the killing of a senior militia leader. The Iraqi police announced in Diyala province, which has been undergoing extensive sectarian cleansing for years by militias Loyal To Iran, has killed 52 prisoners in one attack.
The sheikh of the Bayati tribe in Iraq, Thaer al-Bayati, said that “the gunmen of militias of Al-hashid al-shaabi killed about 50 prisoners inside the prison of Amerli, in retaliation for the killing of Colonel Mustafa police chief of Tuzkurmato in Salahaddin province, during clashes with ISIS near Amerli». He added that «8 bodies had the effects of shooting and stabbing knives, delivered to the forensic medicine department in the province of Diyala, to be delivered to her relatives”. In one year, Iraqi prisons have seen 21 attacks by militias, including six attacks in Diyala, four in Baghdad and the other in prisons in southern Iraq. All of them resulted in the death of 283 inmates, according to private sources in the Ministry of Justice.
The Iraqi government does not provide any real figures for the numbers of its prisoners, but it is estimated that there are about 200,000 detainees in official or militia prisons. The number of Arab detainees in prisons is also decreasing, and is continuing due to ongoing killings, deaths and hunger in prisons. The current numbers indicate the presence of about 450 Arab prisoners, from Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Sudan, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Libya and Palestine. “The Iraqi authorities have no action taken to stop the mass executions of kidnappers by Al-hashid al-shaabi, nor to the crimes inside the prisons carried out by the militias or the crimes of torture and ill-treatment in their official prisons. And all the committees that were formed for the purpose of investigating the crimes of Al-hashid al-shaabi did not submit any accused of the judiciary and were only propaganda committees ». ”Al-hashid al-shaabi forces have executed hundreds of abducted civilians. The most heinous crimes of mass execution were the execution of dozens of civilians in al-Naba’i, al-Dor, Saqlawiyah, Karma and areas of Diyala province.
Most of these crimes were documented in video and audio by the phones of Al-hashid al-shaabi members they published it. While exposed to it Detainees in official prisons, the Violations are continuing and increasing from torture, ill-treatment and liquidation in different ways. The legal characterization of all such crimes as crimes against humanity. Information indicates To the involvement of officials and political leaders of Iraq, including deputies, ministers and clerics of those crimes, and what happened after the bombing of Karrada, the beating of camps for the displaced innocent, and the abduction of more than 1400 people do not know their fate until today, the government should be put to an end, but the government is not Have the ability to stop these repercussions as a result of sectarian and partisan conflict, power centers and multiple centers of responsibility.
Secret prisons for women and children
The issue of women detained in Iraqi prisons played a key role in the demonstrations that took place in Iraq during the so-called “Square of glory and dignity” in 2013 in Anbar province. Their file was one of the most prominent files demanded by the demonstrators demanding reform by the Iraqi government. Reports indicate the existence of unfairness and injustice against a number of prisoners. Despite the fact that the government agencies in Iraq has been denying these reports, the file remained women detainees of the most prominent demands of the Iraqi Sunni blocs during the process of political consensus with the other blocs. In February 2014, Human Rights Watch reported that thousands of Iraqi women were being held illegally and subjected to torture and other forms of ill-treatment, including sexual abuse, which was denied by the Iraqi Ministry of Justice. The spokesman for the Iraqi Ministry of Justice Haider al-Saadi said that the ministry’s prisons include 950 women detained, but he emphasizes that most of them are sentenced to criminal and other cases. And that there was information about human rights violations in women’s prisons. The period of the eight-year term of former Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki was one of the most recent episodes of violations of the rights of detained women, but there was no evidence of any change Approach under the new government, and the base of Al Muthanna military airport in Baghdad, where a secret prison for Sunni detainees was found, also contains another secret section dedicated to women and children. An eyewitness, a member of the Iraqi security forces in charge of guarding, was quoted as saying that he saw in the base – which is supposed to be free of prisons and prisoners – detained children while they were playing. The witness confirmed that Women are arrested as suspects, tortured and forced to confess, and in cases where they are arrested as a barter and pressure on male detainees and forced them to confess. The witness pointed out that a man refused to confess, and then the interrogators said: “Bring his wife and put it in a room adjacent to his cell and took a painful beating to hear her scream and then went to him and threatened to rape if He did not confess.