Centre for Research on Globalisation
Centre de recherche sur la mondialisation


Treatment by Coalition Forces of POWs 

by The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

www.globalresearch.ca     21  May  2004

The URL of this article is: http://globalresearch.ca/articles/ICR405B.html

We bring to the attention of our readers the complete text of the leaked ICRC report entitled

Treatment by Coalition Forces of POWs and Other Protected Persons in Iraq under the Geneva Conventions during Arrest, Internment and Interrogation



This Report was first submitted to the Coalition Provisional Authority headed by Paul Bremer in February 2004.

The Report was first leaked to the Wall Street Journal.

Excerpts were published in the May 7 issue of the WSJ.

It should be noted that the ICRC started to lodge complaints on the violation of the Geneva convention, prior to end of the war in April 2003. Most of these complaints have been casually ignored.

The CPA states that it did not know of the contents of this report.

"Coalition General Sanchez, Abizaid, Miller and Col. Marc Warren, a military lawyer, said they had not seen reports from the International Committee of the Red Cross containing allegations of abuse at prisons. The reports predated by several months a soldier's complaint in January that initiated an investigation. The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times reported Wednesday that U.S. military officials received a report in November, and the Times said the officials "responded . . . by trying to curtail the international agency's spot inspections.


Abizaid described the system for handling reports from the Red Cross as "broken" until new guidelines were instituted in January. Miller said there had been "no standardized procedures for distributing or responding" to the reports." (AJC, 20 May 2004)

The report, which confirms systematic violations of the Geneva Conventions is not normally made public.

 "I am profoundly disturbed that the report was made available for publication without the consent of the ICRC." declared ICRC president Jakob Kellenberger. "The ICRC fulfils its mandate to protect persons detained in armed conflict by addressing problems and violations through private approaches to the detaining authorities and their superiors. This long-standing practice allows us to act in a decisive manner, while ensuring that our delegates have continued access to detainees around the world."

"The Pentagon tried mightily to keep under wraps the report by Gen. Antonio Taguba about the horrors at Abu Ghraib prison, declaring it top-secret. Rumsfeld told the senators, "We did not release the Taguba report to the press. That was done by someone to release, against the law, a secret document." Even after the report was virtually public, the Pentagon warned its employees, "THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS REPORT IS CLASSIFIED; DO NOT GO TO FOX NEWS TO READ OR OBTAIN A COPY."

Ignorance may be bliss, but it's a bad Defense strategy.

Similar efforts to suppress a Red Cross report from last fall, warning of unacceptable acts against Iraqi prisoners, didn't keep the report off the front page of Monday's Wall Street Journal. Suppression won't work for the remaining prison photos, either."


Global Research Editor, 21 May 2004