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Wednesday, November 28, 2001

Incident: "Tipton three" detained

Britons Rhuhel Ahmed, Asif Iqbal and Shafiq Rasul are detained in northern Afghanistan. They are later transferred to Guantanamo Bay, where they will detained for 2 years and 4 months. When released, they will claim to have been mistreated. They will claim that they were:
  • kicked and beaten;
  • given "so-called" cavity searches, which were very painful and seemed to serve other objectives;
  • deprived of sleep;
  • given a reduced food diet;
  • shackled in painful positions;
  • sexually humiliated;
  • subjected to loud music, strobe-lights, and temperature/weather extremes;
  • beaten during interrogations;
  • not treated for infected wounds caused by leg-shackles;
They also claim that the following things occurred to other detainees:
  • Severe beatings: "Eight soldiers repeatedly punched Mr Dousari, smashed his face into the concrete floor until his nose was broken, and kicked him in the stomach. When they took him out they hosed the cell down and the water ran red with blood."
  • One detainee became brain damaged after a beating.
  • Detainees were sexually molested.
  • Many detainees suffer from severe mental problems.
  • There are many suicide attempts amongst detainees.

Rasul (top) and Ahmed (bottom) before their detention.
According to a BBC report (04 August 2004), the torture caused the trio to falsely confess to appearing in a video with al-Qaeda chief Osama Bin Laden and Mohammed Atta, one of the 11 September hijackers. This was despite the fact that they were in Tipton at the time.

In February 2006, The Independent will write an article about Michael Winterbottom's new film The Road to Guantanamo, based on interviews with the three and reconstructions of their experience (IMDb entry). it will win the Silver Bear for Direction at the 56th Berlin International Film Festival, and will be shown on UK Channel 4 in March, 2006. It may be downloaded for a very small price here.

The film reveals that, before their release, the three young men were asked if they would become spies for their former torturers. Their responses was unanimous and unequivocal: "fuck you".


Anonymous David Rothsbard said...

I am an American and it deeply shames me to read of this horrific experience that these innocent men endured all in the name of the so called hunt for al-quaida.
I hope that these men will somehow, someway find a little peace and be able to live their lives with at least a degree of normalcy.

14/12/06 4:16 am  
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