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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 March 2006, 21:44 GMT
US military to leave Abu Ghraib
By Adam Brookes
BBC Pentagon correspondent

Abu Ghraib photo
Pictures of abuse at Abu Ghraib shocked America and the world
The US military in Iraq says it plans to transfer detention operations in Baghdad away from Abu Ghraib Prison.

A new detention facility is being constructed at a site known as Camp Cropper, near Baghdad's international airport, a US spokesman says.

The name of Abu Ghraib prison was synonymous with torture and cruelty under the regime of Saddam Hussein.

Since his fall, the US army has run the prison - which was the scene of abuse by American troops.

Photographs of what took place there in 2003 at the hands of a group of poorly-trained, poorly-disciplined soldiers shocked the US and the world.


Plans to end detention operations at Abu Ghraib had been in the works for a while, the spokesman said.

Prisoners at Iraq's Abu Ghraib jail in October 2005
About 4,500 inmates are held at Abu Ghraib
He added that the detainees held by the US military would be transferred to Camp Cropper when construction was complete.

It is anticipated that that will happen in the coming months.

The US military, he said, would then hand over Abu Ghraib prison to the Iraqi ministry of justice. It currently holds just over 4,500 detainees.

Among them are common criminals and those suspected of involvement in Iraq's insurgency.

The US military will doubtless be glad to be rid of this old and notorious prison.

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