TORTURED LONDONER FACES TRIAL IN GUANTÁNAMO MILITARY TRIBUNAL
The London Guantánamo Campaign condemns the decision by the US authorities on Friday to try Binyam Mohamed by military tribunal for alleged terrorism offences.
Binyam has suffered six years of illegal detention without trial, of which eighteen months were spent in a Moroccan prison where he was subjected to the most appallingly brutal torture. "Evidence" extracted from him during that time is to be used in his trial. It is inconceivable that such a trial, before what amounts to a "kangaroo court", could serve the interests of justice, and it is deplorable that the US authorities should even contemplate this action.
The London Guantánamo Campaign also condemns the UK Government for its refusal to take steps within its power to assist Binyam. His lawyers claim that UK agencies hold material that would support his case that the allegations made against him are false and based on torture. The Government refuses to hand over this material.
It is deeply shameful that, in the interests of concealing its own apparent complicity in Binyam's treatment, the Government is prepared to see him subjected to a trial on charges that may ultimately lead to him facing the death penalty.
Binyam's Consel, Lieutenant-Colonel Yvonne Bradley, said "I cannot pretend that the US military commissions are fair, but how can we possibly hope to help Mr Mohamed if his own Government leaves him to his fate?"
We call on the UK Government to avoid bringing any further shame upon this country, and to imediately take all steps within its power to help free Binyam from this plight.
2 June 2008
NOTES TO EDITORS
Binyam Mohamed was born in Ethiopia in 1978 and came to Britain in 1994, where he lived for seven years, sought political asylum, and was given leave to remain.
In 2002 he was kidnapped while in Pakistan, and handed over to the CIA who illegally "rendered" him to Morocco. After 18 months of interrogation under torture, he was "rendered" again to an underground prison in Kabul, before finally being taken to Guantánamo Bay in September 2004, where he has been held without trial ever since.
Today, as a result of almost six years of torture and abuse, Binyam is in an extremely poor mental and physical state, suffering from severe depression and post traumatic stress disorder. A recent psychiatric report warns that he "is reaching the end of his psychological tether".
The London Guantánamo Campaign campaigns for justice for all prisoners at Guantánamo bay, for the closure of the prison, and for an end to the practice of extraordinary rendition
Contact: Christine, 07737 783 159