Poland Fined for Complicity |in CIA Torture of Detainees

     (CN) – In the first rulings of their kind, the European Court of Human Rights found Poland liable for enabling the CIA torture of two suspected terrorists in a forest north of Warsaw, and letting them be sent to Guantanamo Bay to potentially face a “flagrantly unfair trial” by military commission.
     The two decisions, released on Thursday, related to the cases of the Yemen-born Abd Al Rahim Hussein Al-Nashiri and Zayn al-Abidin Muhammad Husayn, a Palestinian better known by his nom de guerre Abu Zubaydah.
     Al-Nashiri is the alleged mastermind of the bombings of the U.S.S. Cole, which killed 17 sailors off the coast of Yemen, and the M/V Limburg, a French oil tanker.
     U.S. authorities have described Abu Zubaydah as the “third or fourth man” in al-Qaida, but he was since revealed never to have been a member of the terrorist group. Instead, he was a “fixer” for various extremist Muslim groups, The Washington Post reported in 2009.
     Both men are now deemed “high-value detainees,” imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay’s top-secret Camp 7.
     Although al-Nashiri faces death-penalty offenses for murder, terrorism and conspiracy at his upcoming military commission, Abu Zubaydah has not been charged with a crime and remains under indefinite detention.
     The men claim to have been put on the same “rendition plane” to Poland and tortured in an area lined by “thick pine forest on both sides” and cordoned off for military operations.
     In decisions spanning a combined 455 pages, Europe’s top human rights court unanimously ruled in both of their cases that Poland’s participation in their alleged treatment violated five articles of its human rights convention, including prohibitions on torture and degrading treatment and the rights to effective remedies and a fair trail.
     Poland must pay each of the suspects 100,000 euros, as well as an addition 30,000 euros to Abu Zubaydah’s costs and expenses.
     Amnesty International’s counterterrorism expert Julia Hall hailed the “historic” rulings as a “milestone against impunity.
     “Poland knowingly became part of the U.S.A.’s illegal network of black sites that was used to secretly detain and torture individuals rounded up in counter-terrorism operations,” Hall wrote in a statement.
     Nashiri’s lawyer did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

%d bloggers like this: