Monday, April 19, 2010

Canada has most prisoner transfers in Afghanistan

As usual the Harper government is secretive about everything refusing to release figures about how many detainees are transferred even though other countries do so. As is done ad nauseam security reasons are given. Apparently other countries do not share these concerns. Not only that but the Human Rights organisation has trouble gaining access to these detainees. This is from the CBC.

Canada tops allies in Afghan prisoner transfers

Canada outstripped its NATO allies almost two-to-one in the number of prisoners it turned over to Afghan authorities in the first nine months of last year, figures prepared for the Afghan government show.

The statistics were compiled by the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission and made available to The Canadian Press. The federal government does not disclose them.

Furthermore, the commission complained in its latest annual report that it is still frustrated in attempts to check on prisoners handed over to the country's notorious intelligence service, the National Directorate of Security.

The commission, which relies heavily on Canadian government funding and mentorship, said between January and the end of September 2009, it was notified that 267 suspected insurgents had been transferred to NDS by Canada, Britain, the Netherlands and Denmark. The United States has its own system for dealing with captured Taliban.

Among NATO allies, the Canadian army was way out in front with 163 prisoners. Britain followed with 93 confirmed transfers; the Netherlands 10 and Denmark 1.

Unlike those countries, who make these numbers publicly available, Ottawa refuses to release its figures, citing operational security and the safety of troops as the reason. Before the U.S. surge, the explanation was that giving away the number of captured with so small a Canadian force on the ground would help the Taliban track where their people might be.

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