The Lucrative Bounty Program

In an effort to capture enemy combatants during the War on Terror the United States implemented a bounty program offering monetary rewards for information on, or the surrender of, possible enemy combatants. The bounty system has been beneficial in bringing forward actionable information against enemy combatants because it has functioned as a strong motivator, but that may also have led to the detention of innocent civilians at both Guantanamo Bay and Bagram Airbase. Turning over individuals to U.S. troops was <Read More>


Bagram: Who is Still Being Detained?

“After a while I lost all hope that I would ever leave Bagram. I accepted that I would never be free.”

Jibran, ex-detainee from Bagram[1]                              

This statement reflects the longstanding problems with the indefinite detention at Bagram. In the immediate aftermath of the September 11th attacks, many individuals were captured by US forces to obtain information and restore the nation’s security. Today, there are over 50 people detained by the United States at Bagram with no release date in sight. The <Read More>


Systematic Torture Continuing in Afghanistan

According to a United Nations report released on January 20, 2013, systematic torture remains a serious concern in many Afghan-controlled detention facilities, despite “concerted efforts” and “sustained support” by international partners and the Afghan Government to “root out torture and abusive detention practices.”[1]

The 139-page report, compiled by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), finds that “more than half of 635 detainees interviewed (326 detainees) experienced torture and ill-treatment in numerous facilities of the <Read More>


Afghanistan and the United States Struggle over Releases of Detainees

After control of much of the Bagram detention center was handed over to Afghanistan in 2012, President Karzai “ordered authorities to review the cases of more than 3,000 prisoners” held at Bagram.[1]  In the course of 2012, “570 detainees have been released after acquittal in Afghan courts.”[2]  Nearly 1,000 prisoners have been released in 2012 overall, including prisoners whose cases never reached the Afghan courts.[3] This post analyzes the factors underlying these releases, and reports on the latest developments in <Read More>


The Afghan Review Structure for Detainees After the United States-Afghanistan Detainee Transfer (Part 1)

The Afghan Review Structure for Detainees After the United States-Afghanistan Detainee Transfer (Part 1)

The Afghan review procedures and standards for detainees who have been transferred from United States control contain numerous problems. The procedures are unclear; rules of evidence are obscure; and criteria for determining whether detainees are criminally prosecuted, detained without trial, or released, are ambiguous.

These problems have been amplified by a necessity to implement a complex review structure within a six-month deadline[1]  set by the Memorandum <Read More>