First Published: 2005-03-07

 
CIA uses secret way to torture terror suspects
 

CBS reports CIA secretly jets terror suspects to countries known to use torture for interrogation.

 

Middle East Online

Part of CIA's 'rendition' program

WASHINGTON - The CIA uses a secret jet to ferry terror suspects for interrogation to countries known to use torture, according to a report aired late Sunday.

CBS television's "60 Minutes" program videotaped the Boeing 737 on a runway at Glasgow Airport in Scotland, saying it was able to trace it through a series of companies and executives that apparently exist only on paper.

It said the plane had made at least 600 flights to 40 countries, all after the September 11, 2001, attacks, including 30 trips to Jordan, 19 to Afghanistan, 17 to Morocco, and 16 to Iraq.

The plane also went to Egypt, Libya and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, according to the report.

The aircraft is part of the Central Intelligence Agency's so-called "rendition" program, in which suspects are sent to foreign governments for interrogation.

The agency has not formally acknowledged the program's existence.

A German national, which CBS identified as Khalid El-Masri, told a reporter he was on vacation in Macedonia when he was arrested by police and held in Macedonia for three weeks and then brought to the airport, beaten by masked men, drugged and put aboard the 737.

The plane left Skopje, Macedonia, and went to Baghdad and then Kabul, with El-Masri saying he awoke in a jail cell where his captors said, "You're in a country without laws and no one knows where you are," CBS News quoted the former detainee as saying.

"It was very clear to me that he meant I could stay in my cell for 20 years or be buried somewhere," El-Masri told the network.

He added that his fellow prisoners in the American-run jail were Saudi Arabians, Tanzanians, a Yemeni and a Pakistani who had lived in the United States.

El-Masri said he had been in solitary confinement for five months and then released without an explanation.

According to the report, the jet also made 10 trips to Uzbekistan, where former British ambassador Craig Murray said the jet's nominal owner, Premier Executive Transport Services, kept a small staff at the airport in Tashkent.

Murray said Uzbek interrogators use unusually cruel methods, including "techniques of drowning and suffocation, rape ... and also the insertion of limbs in boiling liquid."

Murray said he had complained to his superiors that information was being obtained by torture and sent his deputy to the CIA station chief to inquire about the practice.

"The CIA definitely knows," he told the television program, adding that his deputy had confirmed that evidence "probably was obtained under torture but the CIA didn't see that as a problem."

He was ordered to return to London four months ago and has since left government service, CBS News pointed out.

 

Horse-trading begins as Tunisia awaits formation of new government

Jihadists flock to fight on ‘unprecedented scale’

UK court says Libyan Abdul-Hakim Belhaj can sue over rendition

Syria accuses Turkey of ‘flagrant violation of sovereignty’

Global campaign to end female genital mutilation kicks off

US to examine troops exposed to chemicals in Iraq

African Union hits back at Somalia rape claims

New scare in Turkey as ‘suspect packages’ found

‘Insults against Netanyahu’ cause embarrassment to US

Kuwait online activist gets four years in jail for insulting judges

Heavy fighting in South Sudan sparks fears of humanitarian catastrophe

Sweden officially recognises State of Palestine

Egypt jails retired general for damaging national security

Israel closes al-Aqsa mosque to worshipers in rare move

Gaza civil servants receive delayed salaries

After US criticism, Israel vows no concessions to Palestinians

Libya internationally recognised PM opens doors of dialogue with rivals

Huthi rebels seize stronghold of Muslim Brotherhood in central Yemen

Will Nidaa Tounes shun Islamists in Tunisia government formation?

Egypt starts work on buffer zone along border with Gaza

Turkey Sultan unveils new palace: Another break with symbols of secular state

Heavy toll as ‘Islamic State’ fights for control of Syria oil field

Iran President suffers fresh setback with rejection of Science Minister

Nuclear deal or no deal: ‘Red lines’ lay bare internal divisions in Iran

Heavy security in Mogadishu as UN chief meets Somalia president

Fighters from Free Syrian Army leave Turkey to join Kobane battle

Israel denies banning Palestinians sharing buses

Kurd fighters leave northern Iraq base for Syria deployment

Jordan requests UN emergency meeting over Israel settler expansion

Jerusalem Mayor visits Al-Aqsa mosque prompting anger

Tunisia reinforces commitment to democracy with ‘transparent’ elections

Turkey ‘decides’ for Kobane future: No Kurds, no Assad... Only Free Syrian Army!

Bahrain suspends Al-Wefaq weeks before parliamentary elections

Huge game changer in Tunisia: ‘In-credible’ failure of Islamist Ennahda Party

Libya PM in Khartoum for talks with Bashir

PKK hijack truck seizing explosive substance

Saudi lawyers get jail time for offensive tweets

Ennahda concedes defeat in Tunisia parliamentary elections

Syria rebels launch assault on regime-held city of Idlib

Iraq peshmerga wait for Turkey stance to depart for Syria

Sisi enacts military trials decree to cover ‘existential threat’

US calls for online war against ‘Islamic State’

Donors pledge $8 billion for Horn of Africa

Acid attacks in Iran: Deputy of Judiciary Chief to lead investigation

Lebanon army enters Islamist stronghold in Tripoli