PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan (Nov. 4, 2010) — The fourth cohort of Afghan National Army (ANA) military police soldiers graduated from the Detention Operations Training Center in Parwan Nov. 4.
The group of 200 soldiers completed two weeks of language training and eight weeks of detention operations training as part of an extensive curriculum required prior to assuming guard operations at the Detention Facility in Parwan (DFIP).
The ten-week academic instruction is the first phase of a two-phase training curriculum the ANA soldiers must complete before beginning work in the detention facility. The second training phase is six weeks of on-the-job training where ANA soldiers work with their U.S. counterparts and learn all aspects of detention operations, including the escort of detainees to medical appointments, recreation and personal hygiene time, and security and operations roles. This training, in conjunction with academic training, prepares the soldiers to assume responsibility of the DFIP and emphasizes humane care and custody of detainees.
“The training wasn’t easy, but it gives us the ability to do our jobs and maintain the high standard that our counterparts have put forth,” said Sgt. Mira Jon, an Afghan soldier.
The ANA deputy commander of Combined Joint Interagency Task Force 435 (CJIATF-435), Maj. Gen. Marjan Shuja, congratulated the graduating class during the ceremony. “Your nation and its people are proud of you, and thank you for protecting them from harm,” he said.
Deputy Minister of Defense Enayatullah Nazari also addressed the graduating class.
“It is a great honor to be here to address you today,” Nazari said. “The people of Afghanistan can sleep peacefully at night knowing that you are on guard and doing your job.”
Afghan Army Pvt. Nasrudin, one of the ANA Soldiers, spoke about how the detention training experience and job opportunity impacted him.
“I had nothing before I came here and now I have money to support myself and an extended family,” Nasrudin said. “I have five brothers, but I haven’t seen any of them in many years. So now this is my family and I hope to continue serving my country with them for years to come.”
ANA Sgt. Mira Jon, the non-commissioned officer in charge of escort duties and one of the Soldiers from Cohort 2, said, “The training that we received from our American counterparts has allowed us to transition here very easily.”
More than 500 ANA military police Soldiers are currently training to augment the guard force and more than 260 are fully trained and standing guard duty inside the facility with their American counterparts. CJIATF-435 actively partners with Afghan forces in preparation for the responsible transfer of military detention operations to the government of Afghanistan.
CJIATF-435, in partnership with the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and U.S. interagency and international partners, conducts operations in detention, corrections, judicial sector and biometrics. CJIATF is working toward the transition of detention operations to Afghan control while promoting Rule of Law practices
The 46th Military Police Command, Task Force Peacekeeper, a subordinate CJIATF-435 command, oversees all detention operations in Afghanistan. The task force ensures the safe and humane custody, control and care of detained persons in the DFIP. Their efforts will enable ANA soldiers to take over from their United States counterparts and run the detention facility.
The 96th Military Police Battalion, Task Force Spartan, trains the Afghan soldiers in detention operations and provides linguists to overcome language barriers.
The DFIP, a state-of-the-art theater internment facility, located several kilometers from Bagram Airfield, was completed in September 2009 and occupied by detainees in late December 2009. The DFIP is equipped with a medical facility, on-site family visitation center, vocational facilities and educational classrooms. The design of the DFIP accommodates detainee reintegration efforts and enables CJIATF-435 to better align detainee operations with the overall strategy to defeat the extremist insurgency in Afghanistan.