March 25 - The U.S. formally handed over control of its biggest detention facility in Afghanistan to Afghan authorities Monday after months of intense negotiations, bringing to an apparent end a thorny chapter in U.S.-Afghan relations. Mana Rabiee reports.
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It's been a year in the making.
But on Monday, the biggest U.S. detention facility in Afghanistan was formally transferred to Afghan control.
Parwan Detention Center, or Bagram prison, houses over 3,000 inmates, including insurgents considered dangerous to international forces here.
The prison vexed relations between the two countries.
Detainees are often held for years without trial, and human rights activists say they will be vulnerable to more rights abuses after the handover.
Lal Mohammad was jailed over 17 months before he was found innocent and released.
(SOUNDBITE) (Pashto) LAL MOHAMMAD, WHO WAS HELD AT BAGRAM DETENTION CENTRE FOR 17 MONTHS, SAYING:
"I was beaten by Afghan and foreign soldiers in the prison. There was torture. We were locked in a toilet for days and nights. I was taking ablution inside that toilet where I was sleeping. Is a toilet a place for keeping humans and Muslims that they had to keep us there?"
The handover comes on the same day U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry paid an unannounced visit to the country .... amid plans to withdraw foreign troops from combat operations in 2014.
As the Afghan flag was hoisted in front of the prison, a thorny chapter in U.S.-Afghan relations seemed to come to an end.
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