In a new interview with the BBC, a former Gitmo detainee and former member of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula accused the United States of torturing him while at Bagram prison in Afghanistan.
The BBC interviewed Mohammed al-Awfi in the well-appointed apartment where he is being held by Saudi authorities. A Saudi national, al-Awfi’s journey took him from Bagram to Guantanamo to the Saudi rehabilitation program to the Yemen-based Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and finally back into the hands of Saudi authorities.
Al-Awfi was picked up in Pakistan in 2001, according to the Defense Department, after he allegedly “participated in military operations” against the U.S.
After being released from Gitmo in 2007, he went through the Saudi rehabilitation program. He says “psychological pressures” lead him to travel to Yemen, and that he was pressured into appearing in the January 2009 video announcing the creation of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. He later turned himself in to Saudi authorities, for reasons that are not entirely clear.
In the interview with the BBC he accuses American interrogators of torturing him at Bagram prison in Afghanistan, including using electric shocks, in order to extract confessions. (Warning: extremely graphic language.)
The BBC explains his present circumstances:
Al-Awfi is now living in luxury accommodation in Riyadh’s top security prison where he is being drained of every scrap of intelligence.
He has all the comforts of home, a well furnished flat and regular visits by a grateful and relieved family.
Watch the whole BBC interview.
Al-Awfi is also the ex-detainee who ABC falsely reported had a hand in planning the failed Christmas attack over Detroit. TPMmuckraker rounded up what’s known about the role of ex-detainees in Al Qaeda in Yemen in this post.