Authorities neglected tortured Norwegian-Iraqi / News / The Foreigner

Authorities neglected tortured Norwegian-Iraqi. Norwegian authorities stand accused of washing their hands after claims they neglected a Norwegian-Iraqi citizen tortured by US security personnel during the Iraq War. Iraqi police arrested the man, a suspected terrorist and hired killer at the time with a Norwegian passport, after a fatal attack on a Bagdad police checkpoint in August 2004. NRK reports documents released recently by Wikileaks show he was subsequently interrogated regularly by the CIA and US Marines after being held in an Iraqi police jail.

iraq, war, espen, barth, eide, ministry, foreign, affairs, torture, amnesty, international, jan, peder, egenaes, un, nupi, jan, egeland, norwegian, institute, international, affairs, abu, ghraib



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Authorities neglected tortured Norwegian-Iraqi

Published on Friday, 12th November, 2010 at 14:44 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 12th November 2010 at 20:25.

Norwegian authorities stand accused of washing their hands after claims they neglected a Norwegian-Iraqi citizen tortured by US security personnel during the Iraq War.

Old Globe AZ jail (Illus. photo)
Old Globe AZ jail (Illus. photo)
Photo: David Quigley/Flickr


Brutality        

Iraqi police arrested the man, a suspected terrorist and hired killer at the time with a Norwegian passport, after a fatal attack on a Bagdad police checkpoint in August 2004.

NRK reports documents released recently by Wikileaks show he was subsequently interrogated regularly by the CIA and US Marines after being held in an Iraqi police jail.

In an interview with NRK last month the man, who now lives in Denmark, alleges he was brutally treated under journeys from his cell at a US military prison camp.

“They tied me so hard that I could feel the blood flowing from my arms. They put a bag over my head, closing it with tape, and a soldier sat beside me who aimed his gun at me the whole time. I was constantly afraid he would shoot me,” he told them, saying his cell was so narrow that he could not lie down.

Approximately one month following his initial arrest, US military personnel apologised and handed him over to the Norwegian consulate following requests by his family to Norway’s Foreign Service.

Deliberate move?

The man contacted the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (UD) after he came home, but alleges they said they could not help him.

Moreover, communication NRK has seen between the UD and Foreign Service in Iraq show Norwegian authorities knew the man was a suspected terrorist, and about his interrogations. However, the UD never checked to see if the man had ever been tortured and have been sitting on the fence about the matter, NRK believes.

Head of Amnesty International in Norway Jon Peder Egenæs claims this may have been a deliberate strategy to avoid confronting their closest allies.

“It seems as though Norwegian authorities did not wish to know [about it]. They had good reason to believe the man had been mistreated based on what has already been documented about [brutal treatment of prisoners by allied forces] in, amongst others, Abu Ghraib,” he says, alleging this is because Norway has and does not dare to raise questions about the Americans’ use of torture.

Lapdog

Jan Egeland, Director of the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), supports him.

“This is a pattern that stretches back to [the attack on the World Trade Center in] 2001. We were not, and possibly are still not willing to deal with our closest allies that, from day one in the fight against terrorism, were willing to mistreat prisoners and send them to secret interrogation centres around the world without a trial,” he says.

Jon Peder Egenæs also accuses Norwegian authorities of servility, something Espen Barth Eide, State Secretary at the UD, denies.

“I disagree entirely. We have been very clear in relation to US authorities, including the [UN’s] Human Rights Council just a few days ago, when we asked specific questions about how Americans have taken measures to ensure that torture no longer occurs,” he says.

State Secretary Eide says they will now be looking into the matter further to these reports by NRK.

“As far as we know there were no allegations of torture at the time, so it is not so strange we did not follow this up with the Americans back then. We have now contacted them for an answer regarding what happened.”



Published on Friday, 12th November, 2010 at 14:44 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 12th November 2010 at 20:25.

This post has the following tags: iraq, war, espen, barth, eide, ministry, foreign, affairs, torture, amnesty, international, jan, peder, egenaes, un, nupi, jan, egeland, norwegian, institute, international, affairs, abu, ghraib.





  
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