CIA 'sent prisoners to Jordan'

Rights group says 14 men were transferred to Jordan to be tortured and interrogated.

    Some of the suspects are said to have ended up in
    the US prison camp in Guantanamo Bay [EPA]


    However Nasser Judeh, Jordan's information minister, said the findings were "baseless and untrue," state media reported.
     
    Judeh said that 

    groups involved in attacks were attempting to defame Jordan by providing "fabricated information which could reach human rights organisations."

     

    Under the CIA rendition program, suspects were flown from one
    country to another, usually in secrecy, without the benefit of open legal
    proceedings.

     

    US officials have acknowledged flying around 150 suspects from one country to another, but say they received diplomatic assurances from foreign authorities torture would not be used on the detainees.

     

    'Abusive interrogation'

     

    "We've documented more than a dozen cases in which prisoners were sent to Jordan for torture"

    Joanne Mariner, Human Rights Watch

    The group said Jordan commonly tortured suspects by given them extended beatings on the soles of their feet.

     

    "The Bush administration claims that it has not transferred people to foreign custody for abusive interrogation,'' said Joanne Mariner, terrorism and counterterrorism director at Human Rights Watch.

     

    "But we've documented more than a dozen cases in which prisoners were sent to Jordan for torture."

     

    It said at least five Yemenis, three Algerians, two Saudis, a Mauritanian, a Syrian, a Tunisian, and one or more Chechens from
    Russia were rendered to Jordan.

    Five of the men who had been sent to Jordan are now in US custody in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, it added.

    Inquiry urged

    One part of the report details a note written by a rendered prisoner - reportedly since transferred to the Guantanamo Bay - while in Jordanian custody in late 2002 which refers to his ill treatment.

    Ali al-Hajj al-Sharqawi wrote that GID interrogators beat him "in a way that does not know any limits".

    "They threatened me with electricity, with snakes and dogs ... [They said] we'll make you see death ... They threatened to rape me," it said.

    The group urged the US government to discontinue the CIA's rendition program and urged Jordan to open an inquiry into its

    intelligence department's alleged use of torture and ill-treatment.

    Human Rights Watch said its report was based on first hand information from former Jordanian prisoners who had been detained with the non-Jordanian terrorism suspects.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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