Guards stand at a cell block at the renovated Abu Ghraib prison, now renamed Baghdad Central Prison and run by Iraqis in Baghdad, Iraq, Feb. 21, 2009.(AP Photo/Karim Kadim)
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Iraq has closed Abu Ghraib prison, made infamous by Saddam Hussein's regime and US forces, due to security concerns following a mass breakout last year, the justice ministry said Tuesday.The country is suffering a protracted surge in violence that has claimed more than 2,550 lives this year, and the area west of Baghdad where the prison is located is particularly insecure.The statement quoted Justice Minister Hassan al-Shammari as saying 2,400 inmates arrested or sentenced for terrorism-related offences have been transferred to other facilities in central and northern Iraq.Abu Ghraib prison served as a notorious torture centre under now-executed dictator Saddam Hussein, with an estimated 4,000 detainees perishing there.
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