US colonel fined for Iraq abuse

The commander of a US intelligence brigade has been reprimanded and fined for authorising the use of dogs in interrogating prisoners at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison.

    Washington Post photos showed Abu Ghraib abuses

    Army officials on Wednesday said that no decision, however, has yet been made whether to relieve Colonel Thomas Pappas of command of the 205th Military Intelligence Brigade despite the verdict.

    Pappas was responsible for the military intelligence personnel who conducted interrogations at the Baghdad prison during late 2003 and early 2004 when American guards were photographed abusing and sexually humiliating prisoners.

    Military police guards implicated in the scandal have said interrogators encouraged them to soften up the inmates.

    Newspaper photographs printed around the world showed US guards holding unmuzzled army dogs close to reeling inmates.

    Guilty verdict

    Major-General Bennie Williams found Pappas guilty of two counts of dereliction of duty at the end of a hearing.

    "The action alleged that Colonel Pappas failed to ensure that subordinates were adequately informed of, trained upon and supervised in the application of interrogation procedures," according to an army summary.

    "He was also alleged to have failed to obtain the approval of superior commanders before authorising a non-sanctioned interrogation technique, specifically the presence of military working dogs during the questioning of a detainee," it said.

    Williams "found that Colonel Pappas had committed both offences as alleged".

    Pappas received a written reprimand and made to forfeit $4000 in pay a month for two months.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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