The Public Interest Advocacy Centre (PIAC) has used freedom of information law to obtain more previously classified and confidential documents relating to Australia’s involvement in the conflict in Afghanistan. They reveal allegations of mistreatment of detainees captured or ”apprehended” by Australian forces in Afghanistan between 2010 and last year.
“Under international law, Australia must ensure that detainees are treated ‘humanely’, and that they’re not subjected to ‘humiliating and degrading treatment’. Australia has this obligation even after transferring detainees to one of its allies. Practices, like invasive body searches conducted in public, raise serious concerns, and need to be investigated further,” said PIAC CEO, Edward Santow.
The documents have been heavily censored and so do not reveal the full story.
“It is unfortunate that these documents have been so heavily redacted. When allegations of mistreatment are raised, we need to know that they are thoroughly investigated.”
“Australia claims its policies and practices comply with international law. Being transparent about detainee complaints and investigations is crucial to maintaining public confidence in the Australian military – both here and in Afghanistan,” Mr Santow said.
PIAC will put all the documents online as soon as possible, but in the meantime they can be obtained from the Department of Defence website.
To learn mote about PIAC’s previous investigations into military detention click here.