[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 6 May, 2004, 09:56 GMT 10:56 UK
Iraqi inmate: 'Treated like dogs'
Haydar Sabbar Abed
Haydar was detained by US forces for 10 months
One of the Iraqi men who says he was photographed in degrading poses by American prison guards in Abu Ghraib jail is unemployed father-of-five Haydar Sabbar Abed. He told his story to the BBC Arabic Service.

I had hired a taxi and we were stopped at the main gate of Taji Camp in Baghdad which is under the control of the American troops.

They demanded to see my papers, but I didn't have any, so I was arrested and taken to the army headquarters in Fifth District and then to the detention camp at the airport.

I was told they would ask me a few questions and then I'd be released after a couple of days, but nothing happened for three days.

So they started torturing us. They cut our clothes off with blades

Then, at four in the morning on the third day they called out my number, 13077, and I was taken to Boqa camp in Basra where I thought I'd be tried in an Iraqi court.

But what have I done? I'm not a criminal. I've got five kids and my family didn't even know where I was.

Punished for beating

Then I was taken to Camp One in Abu Ghraib.

They tortured me after I had a fight with an Iraqi working in the camp who was having a relationship with a female soldier.

Picture of Iraqi prisoners being abused in Abu Ghraib jail (AP Photo/Courtesy of The New Yorker)
Haydar says he was forced to masturbate with other prisoners (AP Photo/Courtesy of The New Yorker)
He was giving us a hard time and we had to beat him up.

So they started torturing us. They cut our clothes off with blades. We were stripped naked, even our underwear was cut off.

Then they ordered us to do things in front of a female soldier.

They told us to masturbate towards this female soldier. But we didn't agree to do it, so they beat us.

How could you do something like that in such circumstances. I was frightened, my whole body was shaking.

Then they put a bag on my head, and I pretended, I made movements like I was masturbating.

Broken jaw

They made us act like dogs, putting leashes around our necks and making us bark. They'd whistle and we'd have to bark like dogs.

They made us stand up and then climb on top of each other, one after the other.

They said they were going to kill us, but in the end they took the bags off our heads and I was surprised to see my friends around me.

They had beat me so hard that they broke my jawbone. Even now I can't eat properly

Later a team of American intelligence officers came to see us.

They asked us what had happened and I told them exactly what I've just told you.

I was taken to court, but on 15 April I was released.

It is not possible to verify Mr Abed's account of his experiences in Abu Ghraib prison, although the abuse is consistent with the findings of a US Department of Defense investigation.

See also:

The BBC's Clive Myrie
"The Washington Post says these pictures are part of the same batch that prised open the prisoner abuse scandal"

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific