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US Colonel Relieved of Command for Role in Abu Ghraib Prisoner Abuse


The officer in charge of interrogations at Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison at the time of the abuse scandal has lost his command.

Army Colonel Thomas Pappas was relieved of his command and reprimanded for two instances of dereliction of duty. The action severely damages his military career, but he is not facing criminal charges.

Colonel Pappas allegedly failed to get approval from his commanders before authorizing the presence of military working dogs during the interrogation of detainees.

One year ago, photos were released depicting U.S. forces humiliating prisoners at Abu Ghraib. Colonel Pappas is the second-highest officer to be punished as a result of the scandal. Last week, Brigadier General Janis Karpinski was reduced to the rank of colonel and forced to relinquish her command.

In an interview, Colonel Karpinski blamed General Geoffrey Miller for introducing the methods used to humiliate detainees, including using dog leashes and positioning people in human pyramids.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters and AP.

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