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US army holding 11,000 prisoners in Iraq

world Updated: Jun 10, 2009 09:03 IST

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The US army said on Wednesday it was holding around 11,000 prisoners in Iraq, all of whom will either be freed or handed to Iraqi authorities in line with a security accord between Baghdad and Washington.

In total, 11,057 people are being detained in three prisons run by US forces at Camp Cropper and Camp Taji, which are in and around Baghdad, and Camp Bucca, which is in southern Iraq, a statement said.

"Once the total detainee population drops below 8,000, the theatre internment facility at Camp Bucca will close and all detainees will be held at Camps Cropper and Taji," it said.

Camp Taji is set to be handed over to Iraqi control early next year, while Camp Cropper is expected to be transferred in August 2010.

Today's figure is a drop of around 2,000 on the number announced in March, when the United States said around half of the 13,000 Iraqi prisoners in its custody were considered dangerous.

Since the beginning of the year, detainees considered less of a threat have been freed or transferred to Iraqi authorities at a rate of around 50 a day.