6.7.06

US House committee awaits Abu Ghraib documents after Pentagon subpoena

JURIST - Paper Chase: US House committee awaits Abu Ghraib documents after Pentagon subpoena:

The US House Committee on Government Reform is waiting for the US Defense Department and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to comply with a subpoena seeking to compel the Pentagon to turn over several documents, including all drafts of a key report in the Abu Ghraib [ abuse investigation. In March, the Pentagon failed to respond to an initial request to turn over the documents, most importantly all drafts of the August 2004 Fay reportand all communications relating to information provided by Army Spc. Samuel Provance. Provance testified before a subcommittee of the Government Reform Committee in February, claiming that top military officials were aware of the abuse taking place at Abu Ghraib, but that investigators ignored his information and later retaliated against him for providing unclassified information to the media.

In the hearing, Provance alleged that Maj. Gen. George Fay purposefully questioned him about the role of military police and avoided questioning him on intelligence units. Provance also claimed that US troops had captured and imprisoned the teenage son of a detained Iraqi general to coerce the general to cooperate with interrogators. Provance served at Abu Ghraib in late 2003 with the 302nd Military Intelligence Battalion and was one of the first intelligence specialists to alert the media to the abuse scandal. The rare legislative subpoena against the Defense Department issued late last week gives the Pentagon until July 14 to deliver the unredacted statement that Provance gave to Fay, along with other requested materials.

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