John McCain was never tortured in Hanoi prison, claims ex-prison director

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New York, Oct 25 : Tran Trong Duyet, a former Vietnamese prison director who held Republican presidential candidate John McCain in Hanoi as a prisoner of war (PoW) after his plane was shot down 41 years ago, has contradicted the latter's claim that he was tortured in jail for four years.

Duyet said that McCain's torture version was only to bag a few more votes in the US presidential poll.

"I never tortured or mistreated the PoWs and nor did my staff. The Americans were dropping bombs on military and civilian targets - so it's not as if they had important information we needed to extract," said Duyet in contradiction of McCain's account and those of other prisoners.

Duyet added that he sympathises with McCain and other PoWs for claiming that they were tortured. "It's up to the Americans to decide whether or not he counts as a hero. He was very brave, very manly, he dared to argue with me and he was very intelligent. But, all the talk of being tortured is for the sake of votes," quoted him as saying.

Nguyen Tien Tran, another director at the prison, confirmed his Duyet's version: "We had a clear code of taking care of the injured. We did our best to patch McCain up and he was treated by a good doctor. Why would he say that he was tortured?" he said.

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