CIA Libyan torture scandal on Diego Garcia island


This video says about itself:

New website reveals extent of secret CIA flight network

29 May 2013

A team of academics have launched the world’s largest interactive database detailing suspected CIA rendition flights, many of which may have transported detainees to Guantanamo Bay.

Scotland is the only country so far which has raised any questions on the alleged rendition activity on home soil.

The Rendition Project is a product of a collaborative research between Dr. Ruth Blakely from the University of Kent and Dr. Sam Raphael from Kingston University, London.

Now anyone with an internet connection can understand, view, and track over 11,000 CIA flights detainees who may have been aboard between 2001 and 2006 under the US rendition program, a murky operation of secret detention and torture.

“Our purpose is to shed as much light as possible on this system,” Blakely told RT.

Blakely’s team has compiled a unique database sourced from freedom of information requests, testimonies from detainees, Red Cross reports, courtroom evidence, flight records, and invoices.

The data is categorized into four subcategories- flights which definitely had a detainee on board, those which are suspected of having suspected terrorists on board, and ‘dummy’ or test flights, and other circuit flights, all on 122 different US-registered civilian aircraft.

“Our main aim was to try and map the global rendition system to try and provide a comprehensive a picture as possible how rendition took place, which countries were involved,” Blakely told RT.

Most information was already in the public domain, but Blakely hopes by making it web-accessible, the project will assist human rights investigators and lawyers to defend the rights of detainees who have been victims to unfair torture or questionable tactics.

The site will help reveal “how the CIA managed to hide individuals in this system as it transported them around the world to hold them in prisons where they could be tortured and interrogated,” said Blakely.

By Rory MacKinnon in Britain:

CIA ‘held Gadaffi torture victim on British soil’

Monday 14th April 2014

Kidnapped Libyan politician Abdelhakim Belhadj held briefly in overseas territory Diego Garcia

Fresh evidence emerged yesterday that the CIA held a Libyan opposition leader on British soil before delivering him to Gadaffi torturers.

Kidnapped Libyan politician Abdelhakim Belhadj alleged that he was told by Gadaffi’s own spy chief that the plane which delivered him to Libya had stopped at the British overseas territory of Diego Garcia.

Mr Belhadj, who was kidnapped along with his pregnant wife as they boarded a flight in Malaysia in 2004, made the claim through his lawyers, provided by human rights charity Reprieve.

He said: “The first time I heard that I had gone through a place called Diego Garcia was when I was told by the head of the Libyan intelligence, Moussa Kousa, during my first interrogation session in a prison outside Tripoli.

“He was running the interrogation, and was angry that it had taken a long time for me to arrive in Libya.

“I told him that the plane had stopped somewhere on the way from Bangkok.
“He told me that he knew, and that the plane had landed on an island in the Indian Ocean called Diego Garcia.”

The claim is supported by a CIA flight plan discovered in 2011 at the offices of Gadaffi’s head of intelligence Moussa Kousa showing the joint CIA-MI6 operation had been scheduled to stop at Diego Garcia.

Reprieve deputy director Polly Rossdale said the revelations pile pressure on Tory Foreign Secretary William Hague to answer the allegations.

“The government must come clean about the UK’s role in this dirty affair,” she said.

Carl Bernstein – article about the CIA’s interaction with journalists since WW2: here.

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CIA torture island Diego Garcia and the British government


This video says about itself:

Stealing A Nation‘ (2004) is an extraordinary film about the plight of the Chagos Islands, whose indigenous population was secretly and brutally expelled by British Governments in the late 1960s and early 1970s to make way for an American military base. The tragedy, which falls within the remit of the International Criminal Court as “a crime against humanity”, is told by Islanders who were dumped in the slums of Mauritius and by British officials who left behind a damning trail of Foreign Office documents.

Before the Americans came, more than 2,000 people lived on the islands in the Indian Ocean, many with roots back to the late 18th century. There were thriving villages, a school, a hospital, a church, a railway and an undisturbed way of life. The islands were, and still are, a British crown colony. In the 1960s, the government of Harold Wilson struck a secret deal with the United States to hand over the main island of Diego Garcia. The Americans demanded that the surrounding islands be “swept” and “sanitized”. Unknown to Parliament and to the US Congress and in breach of the United Nations Charter, the British Government plotted with Washington to expel the entire population.

By Paddy McGuffin in Britain:

Come clean on US torture complicity, lawyers tell William Hague

Saturday 12th April 2014

Reprieve writes to foreign secretary following allegations that Britain let the CIA set up an interrogation ‘black site

Lawyers told Britain to come clean yesterday on whether it let the US run a secret torture site on an overseas territory.

Legal action charity Reprieve has written to Foreign Secretary William Hague following reports that the CIA set up a “black site” on Diego Garcia.

Al-Jazeera said this week that a secret US Senate intelligence committee report found “that the CIA detained some high-value suspects on Diego Garcia, an Indian Ocean island controlled by the United Kingdom and leased to the United States.”

And classified CIA documents showed it was run with Britain’s “full co-operation.”

After repeated denials the government finally admitted in 2008 that two rendition flights carrying detainees refuelled on Diego Garcia in 2002.

But it continues to deny that any prisoners were held that or that that a secret CIA prison existed.

Reprieve said that in 2004 anti-Gaddafi militant Abdulhakim Belhadj and his wife were rendered back to Libya in a joint CIA-MI6 operation and, according to a CIA flight plan found following the toppling of Gaddafi, were scheduled to be flown via Diego Garcia.

But in December 2011 Foreign Minister David Lidington told Parliament: “No flights with a detainee on board landed on Diego Garcia in March 2004.”

He added that, apart from the two cases in 2002, the US government had confirmed no other US intelligence flights had landed “in the UK, our overseas territories or the crown dependencies with a detainee on board since September 11 2001.”

Reprieve director Cori Crider said: “We need to know immediately whether ministers misled Parliament over CIA torture on British soil.

“If the CIA operated a black site on Diego Garcia then a string of official statements — from both this and the last government — were totally false.

“Were ministers asleep at the wheel or, as the report suggests, have we been lied to for years?”

When asked for comment, a Foreign Office spokeswoman referred the Star to the department’s previous statements.

See also here.

UK urged to admit that CIA used island as secret ‘black site’ prison: here.

James Mitchell designed the CIA’s post-9/11 torture program. He insists he has nothing to apologize for: here

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British colonial bases for war against Iran?


This video says about itself:

6 August 2007

Chagossian refugees are appealing to Prime Minister Gordon Brown to make a decision on their right to return to their islands.

They were expelled four decades ago by Britain from their tropical archipelago. This happened during the Cold War to make way for a U.S. military base on the island of Diego Garcia. The base has since been used for military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.

In May, Britain’s High Court dismissed an appeal by the Foreign Office against the Chagossians’ return, saying the right to go home was “one of the most fundamental liberties known to human beings”.

Jacques Aristide takes a closer look at the Chagossians’ struggle to go back to their homeland.

By Peter Symonds:

US sought use of British bases for war against Iran

27 October 2012

The British-based Guardian newspaper reported Thursday that American diplomats have been lobbying Britain for the use of its military bases on Cyprus as well as US bases on the British territories of Ascension Island in the Atlantic and Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean in preparation for war on Iran.

The US request points to a massive military buildup against Iran. The Pentagon has already stationed two aircraft carrier battle groups in or near the Persian Gulf, along with additional minesweepers and a specialised floating base that could be used to launch special forces operations inside Iran. A squadron of advanced F-22 fighters has also been moved to the region.

Access to the bases on Cyprus, Ascension Island and Diego Garcia would significantly boost the ability of the US air force to wage round-the-clock strikes against Iran.

The British government has, to date, rebuffed the Pentagon, significantly pointing out that an unprovoked US attack on Iran could be illegal under international law, as Tehran did not currently represent “a clear and present threat”.

British officials have cited advice drafted by the attorney general’s office that has been circulated to the Prime Minister’s office, the Foreign Office and the Ministry of Defence. A senior government official told the Guardian: “The UK could be in breach of international law if it facilitated what amounted to a pre-emptive strike on Iran. It is explicit.”

Like the US-led illegal invasion of Iraq, the Obama administration is preparing to launch a war of aggression against Iran. This was the chief crime for which Nazi leaders were tried and convicted at Nuremberg following World War II.

That Iran is not “a clear and present threat” also punctures the steady buildup of propaganda in the US and international media about the danger of a nuclear-armed Iran.

WikiLeaks reveals how West’s Iran war drive was undermined: here.

Labour MP Jeremy Corbyn warned the People’s Assembly that Britain could be dragged into a devastating war with Iran: here.

The Other Lobby: Newspapers of Persian Gulf Oil Monarchies Condemn US-Iran Rapprochement: here.

Torture island Diego Garcia


This video says about itself:

Stealing A Nation‘ (2004) is an extraordinary film about the plight of the Chagos Islands, whose indigenous population was secretly and brutally expelled by British Governments in the late 1960s and early 1970s to make way for an American military base. The tragedy, which falls within the remit of the International Criminal Court as “a crime against humanity”, is told by Islanders who were dumped in the slums of Mauritius and by British officials who left behind a damning trail of Foreign Office documents.

From British daily News Line:

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

LABOUR’S SECRET DETENTIONS ON DIEGO GARCIA

Legal charity Reprieve yesterday demanded the British government reveal details of the secret illegal detention of ‘ghost’ prisoner Mustafa Setmariam Naser on Diego Garcia and asked two UN Special Rapporteurs to urgently investigate his disappearance.

Reprieve said in a statement: ‘Mustafa Setmariam Naser was ‘disappeared’ while in US custody in 2005.

‘Reprieve has learned that he was sent to Syria, where he is held incommunicado in shocking conditions and almost certainly tortured.

‘It seems the US deliberately “disappeared” him to a rights-abusing regime once he stopped being useful for intelligence purposes.

‘The UK shares responsibility for Mr Naser’s disappearance because of its complicity in his “ghost” detention on Diego Garcia and elsewhere.’

More about Diego Garcia: here. And here.

US Military Expelled Some Diego Garcia Residents to Make Way for Military Base: here.

The British government is hiding behind a “wall of secrecy” over claims its agents were complicit in the torture of “terrorism” suspects, a parliamentary committee has said: here.

New Labour ministers have refused to give a cast-iron assurance that the British government will never collude with torture: here.

‘US and British governments embroiled in enforced disappearances’ – charges Reprieve: here.

A Window Into C.I.A.’s Embrace of Secret Jails: here.

Despite scant police evidence, the Australian media has universally depicted five Muslim men arrested on August 4 in the course of extensive police raids as guilty of an extraordinary plot to attack an army base: here.

LALIT calls for Diego Garcia military base Inspection by IAEA: here.

January 2010. One of the world’s largest coral atolls, which belongs to Britain, could soon become the biggest marine protected area on Earth. A three-month public consultation is underway to persuade Gordon Brown to protect the Chagos Archipelago a group of 55 tropical British islands, which lie in the heart of the Indian Ocean. 10,000 people have already signed up in support of the campaign: here.

Wildlife of the Chagos islands: here.

Conservationists want to turn archipelago into a giant sea-life reserve. But what about the exiled population whose hopes of going home would be dashed forever? Here.

CHAGOS ISLANDERS MAY WIN BACK THE RIGHT TO RETURN says Royal Holloway Report: here.

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UK: Chagos islanders, expelled for US military base, win legal victory


Chagos islandsFrom the BBC:

Chagos families win legal battle

Families expelled from the Chagos Islands by the British have won their legal battle for the right to return home at the Court of Appeal.

Some 2,000 residents were forced out when the British colony in the Indian Ocean was leased to the US in the 1960s to build an airbase at Diego Garcia.

The government took the case to the Court of Appeal after two earlier rulings declared the actions unlawful.

It has a month to decide whether to appeal to the House of Lords.

Many former residents of the Chagos Islands now live in Mauritius or in the UK.

“To accept the islanders’ right to return but do nothing about it… would be meaningless and immoral”

Robert Bain, UK Chagos Support Association chairman

They were evicted from their homes on the Chagos archipelago between Africa and Indonesia, in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

See also here.

And here.

And here.

And here.