Monday, September 5, 2011

Torture victim to sue Britain: Libyan rebel leader could be in line for £1million payout after we turned him over to Gaddafi's henchmen - 6th Sept

The Libyan rebel leader tortured after Britain and America turned him over to Gaddafi’s henchmen could win £1million compensation from UK taxpayers.

Abdel Hakim Belhadj – now working with Nato to hunt down the tyrant – has vowed to sue Britain for helping to snatch him in 2004.

As well as ‘selling’ him to the Libyans, the UK allowed his ‘extraordinary rendition’ via British territory Diego Garcia, secret documents reveal.

Belhadj claims he was forced to take truth drugs and left hanging by his wrists in a Tripoli cell as his interrogators demanded to know the whereabouts of Osama Bin Laden.

At some point, he says, he was questioned by a British agent.

The files appear to blow the lid off years of obfuscation and outright denials that Britain was involved in the illegal transfer of terrorist suspects to countries that used torture.

It was not until 2008, four years after Belhadj’s ordeal began, that ministers even admitted that British landing strips in dependent territories were used for torture flights.

Now the revelations contained within the files discovered in Libyan government offices mean that Britain could be in the unenviable position of paying a large sum to a man likely to be a key official in the new Tripoli regime.

The disclosures came on a day when:

  • It was announced that the bombshell rendition claims and UK links to Gaddafi’s regime would be investigated by the Gibson torture inquiry within weeks;
  • Labour’s Jack Straw was accused of ‘woeful ignorance’ after he claimed he was kept in the dark over rendition by MI6 during his time as Foreign Secretary;
  • It emerged that Britain directly arranged the ‘extraordinary rendition’ flight of another suspect to Tripoli from Hong Kong;
  • David Cameron suggested that Britain will keep bombing Libya until Colonel Gaddafi is brought to justice. Read More