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Abu Ghraib to be demolished: Bush

The Age | May 25, 2004

President George W Bush said that the Abu Ghraib prison where Iraqi detainees were abused by US soldiers would be torn down if the new Iraqi government agrees after June 30.

Bush said that the jail near Baghdad had become "a symbol of disgraceful conduct" by a few US soldiers who carried out the abuse and humiliation of Iraqi inmates seen in photos.

He said in a speech to the Army War College that the United States would fund the building of a new prison system.

"A new Iraq will also need a humane well-supervised prison system," he said.

"Under the dictator (Saddam Hussein), prisons like Abu Ghraib were symbols of death and torture. That same prison became a symbol of disgraceful conduct by a few American troops who dishonoured our country and disregarded our values.

"America will fund the construction of a modern maximum-security prison.

"When that prison is completed, detainees at Abu Ghraib will be relocated. Then with the approval of the Iraqi government we will demolish the Abu Ghraib prison as a fitting symbol of Iraq's new beginning."