bagram prisonThe responsibilities of US-run Bagram prison was handed over to the Afghan government during a ceremony attended by Afghan and US officials in Parwan province of Afghanistan.

NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) following a statement announced, “Today, U.S. Forces – Afghanistan (USFOR-A) transferred control of the U.S. Detention Facility in Parwan (DFIP) to the Ministry of Defense in a ceremony held at the Afghan National Army Logistical Support Area in Parwan.”

“The transfer of the detention facility is an important part of the overall transition of security lead to Afghan National Security Forces. This ceremony highlights an increasingly confident, capable, and sovereign Afghanistan,” said Gen. Joseph F. Dunford, the commander of U.S. Forces Afghanistan.

With the transfer now complete, the Afghan government has renamed the facility the Afghan National Detention Facility at Parwan (ANDF-P), ISAF added following the statement.

The statement also added that in their January meeting in Washington, President Obama and President Karzai agreed to transfer the detainees held at Parwan to Afghan custody and control. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed at today’s ceremony by the Afghan Minister of Defense and General Dunford affirms their mutual commitment to the lawful and humane treatment of detainees and their intention to protect the people of Afghanistan and coalition forces.

“The American and Afghan people have a shared vision — a secure, stable and sovereign Afghanistan that is a respected member of the international community,” Dunford said.

USFOR-A will continue to provide assistance to Afghan partners at the ANDF-P in the form of Security Force Assistance Teams (SFATs) and funding, ISAF said adding that the SFATs will advise and assist the ANADOC with the goal of maintaining the safety and security of Afghanistan. The U.S. has pledged an additional $39 million to support the ANDF-P. To date, the U.S. has provided over $250 million dollars for construction of facilities at both the ANDF-P and at Pol-e-Charkhi.

Handing over the control of Bagram prison to Afghan government had been delayed several times over the past couple of years.

A formal ceremony transferring the last prisoners to Afghan custody collapsed at the last minute two weeks ago when General Joseph Dunford, the head of international forces in Afghanistan, called it off – because Karzai rejected part of the transfer deal.

The frequent delay in handing over the Bagram prison where nearly 3,000 suspected Taliban and al-Qaida operatives are held was a source of tension between Afghanistan and the United States, recently.

The transfer of the prison is seen as a critical part of handing over security responsibilities to the Afghan government before withdrawal of the NATO-led troops from Afghanistan by the end of 2014.