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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Tuesday, 21.09.2021, 05:29

Guantanamo prisoners taking Lithuania to ECHR over suspected CIA detention center

BC, Vilnius, 20.06.2016.Print version
Lithuania has a trial pending at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) over the suspected US CIA detention center after pleas have been filed by suspected terrorists of the Guantanamo base, saying that US authorities could have tortured them in a secret center next to Vilnius, informs LETA/BNS.

The Strasbourg court said that on June 29 it would hear a case where Saudi Arabian-born Palestinian national Abu Zubaydah complains about violations of human rights.


Zubaydah says he was subjected to tortures in a secret US detention center. Some of the case materials are classified.


Lawyers of another Saudi Arabian-born suspected terrorist, Mustafa al Hawsawi, intend to turn to the Strasbourg court shortly after failed attempts to secure a victim status for their client in the investigation conducted by Lithuanian prosecutors.


"Under Lithuanian law, he should be able to have victim status. If this is denied, we will most certainly bring this case to the European Court of Human Rights," said Kyra Hild of the London-based Redress organization, which represents him.


Both individuals are charged with complicity in the 2001 Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the US, which killed nearly 3,000 people. The suspects are currently in detention in a military base in the Guantanamo Bay.


Lithuania's law-enforcement bodies maintain they have not received any evidence of detention of these specific individuals in Lithuania, dismissing their defense's statements as presumptions. MP Arvydas Anusauskas who headed the parliamentary inquiry said that the suspects were seeking victim statuses to avoid death sentence in the United States.


A Lithuanian parliamentary inquiry in late 2009 identified two sites, one in Vilnius and the other close to the Lithuanian capital, that could have been used as detention facilities. The inquiry also found that several CIA-related flights had landed in Vilnius and Palanga between 2003 and 2006, but it did not answer the question of whether any terror suspects had been actually flown into the country.

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