Sunday’s announcement by President Saddam Hussein that he would empty all of the country’s prisons has left the people of Iraq stunned. Even political prisoners, army deserters and those convicted of crimes against the state have been released.
The Iraqi government said the move was a gesture of gratitude from the president, after he claimed a 100% 'yes' vote in last week’s national referendum. Celebrations continued through the night in the streets of cities across Iraq.
Democracy now! Correspondent Jeremy Scahill and filmmaker Jacquie Soohen filed this report from inside one of Iraq’s most notorious prisons, Abu Ghraib, in this, the latest installment of Democracy Now!’s exclusive Iraq Journal.