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Cablegate: Request for Press Guidance On Alleged Abuse Of

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS MANAMA 000809

SIPDIS

SECDEF FOR OASD/PA
CPA BAGHDAD FOR CPIC
USCINCCENT FOR PAO AND POLAD
STATE FOR NEA/PPD MQUINN, ACASPER, PAGNEW; NEA/ARP
LONDON FOR HAMBLEY AND NKHOURY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KPAO BA
SUBJECT: REQUEST FOR PRESS GUIDANCE ON ALLEGED ABUSE OF
FEMALE IRAQI POWS


1. Embassy Manama requests guidance to respond to press
accounts about abuse of female POWs in prisons in Iraq.
Several stories ran on the front pages of Bahrain's
Arabic and English language dailies on 5/29 (see para
three for headlines), quoting sources in Baghdad about
the rape of female prisoners. These sources included the
two Iraqi NGOs, "The Union of Detainees and Prisoners"
and "International Occupation Watch Center," and
professors at Baghdad University. The Gulf Daily News
reported, "a mother a four, arrested in December, killed
herself after being raped by US guards in front of her
husband." The Bahrain Tribune reported, "According to
Iman Khamas, head of the International Occupation Watch
Center, a woman prisoner said her cellmate had been
rendered unconscious for 48 hours. She had been raped
seventeen times in one day by Iraqi police in the
presence of American soldiers." Arabic daily Akhbar Al
Khaleej also reported that, "several women POWs were
killed by their families after coming out of Abu Ghraib
pregnant due to rape."

2. In addition to the print press, Al Arabiya Satellite
Channel carried an exclusive, seven-minute interview with
recently-freed Iraqi woman POW Emtithal Al Qassimi on
5/29 at 1300 (the interview was re-aired throughout the
day and again on 5/30). The ex-POW, in her late fifties,
was dressed in a black hijab and she described her
treatment and the treatment of other inmates in the
Baghdad airport and later in Abu Ghraib. She stated that
she witnessed approximately 120 Iraqi prisoners being
stripped down and then trampelled on by their American
captors. She also said that she had seen female
prisoners sustain permanent damage, including partial
paralysis, as a result of their injuries. (Comment: A
PAS FSN reported that her mother burst into tears after
watching the interview.)

3. Headlines:

- "Horrifying stories about raped Iraqi women prisoners
in Abu Ghraib," Akhbar Al Khaleej

- "Terrifying Testimonies of Occupation Soldiers Raping
Women Prisoners and the Tragic Fate of These Women,"
Akhbar Al Khaleej

- "Women Raped at Abu Ghraib Jail" Bahrain Tribune

- "Abu Ghraib at Centre of New Storm: Women Raped in
Jail," Gulf Daily News

4. This request for guidance has been cleared by NAVCENT
PAO.

5. Minimize considered.
NEUMANN

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