Pics show rape by US soldiers

2009-05-28 22:24

London - A British newspaper on Thursday described photographs showing alleged abuse including rapes at the notorious Abu Ghraib jail in Iraq, which US President Barack Obama does not want to release.

The pictures show US soldiers raping detainees, sexual assaults on prisoners with objects including a truncheon, wire and a phosphorescent tube, and a female prisoner forcibly having her breasts exposed, the Daily Telegraph said.

They relate to 400 cases of alleged abuse at Abu Ghraib and six other prisons between 2001 and 2005, the newspaper said.

It added that the details had come from Major General Antonio Taguba, an ex-army officer who published a 2004 report into Abu Ghraib.

Earlier this month, Obama said he was opposed to the release of the photographs, saying they could cause a backlash against US troops serving overseas.

The move came the month after his administration agreed to release hundreds of pictures from US-run prisons in Iraq and elsewhere in response to a long-running lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).

The ACLU has accused the Obama administration of adopting "the stonewalling tactics and opaque policies of the Bush administration".

Previously released photographs showing abuse of inmates at Abu Ghraib provoked global condemnation when they were published in 2004, the year after Obama's predecessor George W Bush ordered US troops into Iraq to overthrow its ruler Saddam Hussein.