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Russian Held at Guantanamo Alleges Koran Desecration


A Russian who had been held at the U.S. detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, says U.S. forces there regularly desecrated the Koran.

Airat Vakhitov, who was released from Guantanamo last year, said soldiers threw Korans into the toilet and regularly desecrated the book to provoke a response.

The Associated Press quotes Mr. Vakhitov as later saying he did not personally see the Koran being desecrated, but was informed of the alleged incidents by other detainees.

U.S. officials did not immediately respond to the claims made Tuesday in Moscow.

Earlier this month, the Pentagon acknowledged that U.S. forces at Guantanamo had mishandled the Koran on several occasions.

Newsweek magazine reported last month that U.S. forces in Guantanamo had flushed a Koran down a toilet - a charged that sparked deadly riots in Afghanistan and protests in a number of other countries. The magazine later retracted the story.

Some information for this report provided by AP.