News | Feb. 2, 2011

Governors’ visit to DFIP provides a firsthand look at detention operations

By MCC (SW) Maria Yager , Combined Joint Interagency Task Force 435


Afghan National Army Brig. Gen. Safi Safiullah, commander of the Parwan and Pol-E-Charki Military Police Brigade, discusses the Detention Facility in Parwan with Afghan governors during a tour of the facility Feb. 1. Photo by U.S. Navy Chief Mass Communication Specialist (SW) Maria Yager.

PARWAN PROVINCE, Afghanistan (Jan. 2, 2011) — A group of Afghan governors visited the Detention Facility in Parwan, Tuesday, Feb. 1, 2011 to gain a better understanding of the transition of detention operations to Afghan control.

“They are thinking that there are problems in the detention center. Now we can pass a very positive message to the local communities,” said Zabul Province Gov. Mohammad Naseri, speaking of his constituents. “I’m sure we can convince them that the best facilities are available to (the detainees).”

Governors from Zabul, Takhar, Paktika, Uruzgan, and the deputy governor from Farah toured the facility as part of an orientation to Combined Joint Interagency Task Force 435.

Earlier in the day Afghan National Army Maj. Gen. Marjan Shuja, CJIATF-435 Afghan commander, and ANA Lt. Col. Mohammad Anwar Moniri, Ministry of Interior director of biometrics, introduced the governors to the Afghan 1,000.   To dynamically expand the identification of legitimate Afghan citizens, the Afghan Ministry of Interior, supported by Combined Joint Interagency Task Force 435, will implement a biometric enrollment capability throughout Afghanistan.

The Afghan 1000 program is hiring enrollers to collect biometrics throughout Afghanistan.  The governors’ briefing included a demonstration of a Cross Match Jump Kit, the Afghan system used to collect biometrics.  The governors posed a number of questions about the program and the Afghan new Electronic Tazkera, or means of identification, it will create.

Later in the day, the governors toured the DFIP.  DFIP Commander, U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Mandi Murray and her Afghan counterpart, Afghan National Army Brig. Gen. Safiullah Safi, Parwan and Pol-E-Charki Military Police Brigade commander, led the tour and discussed progress on the conditions-based transition of the facility.

CJIATF-435 members serve as detention operations advisors and partner with the Afghan government so these operations can be transitioned to Afghanistan in accordance with a memorandum of understanding between the U.S. and Afghan governments.

The detention facility is equipped with modern medical facilities, an on-site family visitation area, large recreation areas, vocational-technical training and education classrooms, and additional space to conduct legal proceedings.

“The Afghan National Army has full control over the (Afghan Housing Unit) and at the same time we are operating in the other detainee housing units as well.” said Safiullah, who commands more than 1,800 Soldiers.

The ANA began training Soldiers in corrections and detention operations last year. After completing basic corrections training last May, ANA military police completed advanced training at ANA Logistical Support Activity in Parwan to prepare for duty in the DFIP. The first cohort of ANA military police began working alongside their U.S. counterparts last July. U.S. and ANA Soldiers are fully trained in the safe, secure, humane care and custody of detainees in accordance with international standards and Afghan law.

The DFIP operates under U.S. law, in compliance with Common Article III of the Geneva Conventions, The Detainee Treatment Act, the Executive Order signed in 2009, relevant U.S. Department of Defense Directives and the U.S. Army Field Manual. CJIATF-435 also coordinates with other organizations such as the International Committee of the Red Cross, human rights organizations and coalition partners.

CJIATF-435 has oversight of detention operations in Afghanistan, including care and custody of detainees, full implementation of detainee review procedures, and vocational and educational programs designed to facilitate the peaceful reintegration of detainees into society. CJIATF-435 serves as correction and detention operations advisors for their ANA partners and is conducting a conditions-based transition of detention operations to Afghan control while promoting Rule of Law practices.