Britain resumes Afghan detainee transfers
“We are working closely with the Afghan authorities on the handover of the detainees. The first detainees were transferred to Afghan custody last night…” the foreign ministry in London said.
A statement from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) said Britain was pleased with a court approving the transfer into Afghan custody of the detainees held by UK forces.
“The UK government recognises Afghanistan as a sovereign country and it has always been the UK’s intention to transfer detainees as quickly as is legally possible to the Afghan authorities,” it added.
“We are confident that it is safe to transfer detainees to the Afghan National Detention Facility in Parwan where detainees will not face a real risk of torture or serious mistreatment,” the FCO continued.
Lt-Gen. Nick Patrick Carter, the deputy commander of the International Security Assistance Force, told Pajhwok Afghan News on Thursday the detainee transfer issue was being discussed with local authorities.
He neither provided any figures for the detainees held at the Camp Bastion nor cited any law under which British troops are holding them. However, media reports have put at 90 the number of Afghans in the custody of UK forces.
Last month, President Hamid Karzai gave the UK two weeks to shift all prisoners to Afghan control. British forces are allowed to hold suspected insurgents for no longer than 96 hours, except in “exceptional circumstances”.
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