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Miliband forced to release torture evidence

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

London, Feb 10, IRNA -- The British Foreign Office Wednesday was forced to release secret CIA evidence that former Guantanamo Bay detainee Binyam Mohamed was effectively tortured while he was being held in Pakistan.

A seven-paragraph summary of the CIA telling British intelligence officials that Mohammed’s treatment in 2002 was "cruel, inhuman and degrading" was issued after three senior judges dismissed an appeal by Foreign Secretary David Miliband to keep the evidence secret.

Miliband had branded the judiciary as "irresponsible" and argued that to disclose the information would damage vital transatlantic security co-operation.

But the judges said that the case, which effectively confirms Britain’s complicity in torture of one of its own residents, raised issues of "fundamental importance", of "democratic accountability and ultimately the rule of law itself".

Publication of the material Miliband wanted to suppress was "compelling," since they concerned the involvement of wrongdoing by agents of the state in the "abhorrent practice of torture," said Sir Igor Judge.

The material, he said, helped to "vindicate Mr Mohamed's assertion that UK authorities had been involved in and facilitated the ill- treatment and torture to which he was subjected while under the control of USA authorities".

Ethiopean-born Mohamed was arrested in Pakistan over a visa irregularity in 2002 then handed over to US officials. He was secretly flown to Morocco and Afghanistan before being confined in Guantanamo in 2004 until his release last year when all charges against him were dropped.

Two weeks after his release, the BBC published claims that British intelligence (MI5) had colluded with his interrogators by getting them to ask him specific questions which led to his making false confessions of terrorist activities.

Accusations of Britain’s alleged collusion in torture have been raised in more than two dozen cases surrounding British residents and nationals, including several cases going to court to seek redress.

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End News / IRNA / News Code 956271



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