An al Qaeda militant who was named in the extensive U.S. Senate torture report released yesterday and who was allegedly the victim of numerous torture tactics administered by the CIA has reportedly been handed over to Afghanistan. According to his lawyer, the Tunisian detainee, Redha al-Najar, was transferred to an American detention center in Bagram, Afghanistan, on Tuesday.
Speaking to Reuters, Najar’s lawyer, Tina Foster, said she was notified that he had been transferred six days before a submission by the government to the Supreme Court was due, outlining his treatment while under the watch of the CIA as one of the longest-serving detainees. The detailed and graphic Senate report said tactics used on Najar, including sleep deprivation, isolation and threats in addition to physical torture, left psychological damages. The report said Najar became “a broken man” who was “on the verge of complete breakdown.”
Najar is suspected of being one of Osama bin Laden’s bodyguards but was never charged and also never had prisoner of war status. The torture report said he became one of the first detainees subjected to the CIA’s “enhanced interrogation” techniques after being arrested during a raid in Karachi, Pakistan, in May 2002, before eventually being transferred to Detention Center Cobalt, also known as Salt Pit, in September 2002.
Foster is now requesting that Najar be transferred back to the U.S. to be put on trial within U.S. jurisdiction to hold the CIA accountable. “It’s just another way of evading jurisdiction,” Foster said in the report. “Now they will be able to say in court: ‘It’s not our problem.’ ”
“If they released him, I would declare victory and go home. What they have done is make it even more difficult.”
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has also vowed to investigate the CIA practices detailed in the report, much of which took place in Kabul.