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Mauritanian Guantanamo detainee alleges torture in US, foreign custody

[JURIST] A Mauritanian detainee held at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive] has threatened to sue US officials, alleging that he has been tortured in US custody. Lawyers for Mohamed Ould Sillahi [Amnesty International profile] told Reuters Monday that Sillahi was also tortured by officials in Jordan and Mauritania [JURIST news archives], whom he is also threatening to sue, after his arrest in 2001 and before he was handed over to US authorities in 2002. Sillahi said that he has been held for six years without charge and has been denied access to the legal counsel of his choice.

A 2007 Wall Street Journal report [text] said that Sillahi had been accused by other terror detainees of helping to recruit the terror cell behind the 9/11 attacks [JURIST news archive], but that a senior US military prosecutor had refused to prosecute him, believing that some statements made by Sillahi were obtained under torture. An official with the Mauritanian foreign ministry told Reuters that Mauritania has requested that Sillahi and another Mauritanian detainee at Guantanamo be returned to their home country. Reuters has more.

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