US military jury seeks clemency for Pakistani detainee

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NEW YORK:

Seven US military officers, who last week overheard graphic descriptions of the brutal treatment of a Pakistani detainee at the hands of the CIA, urged him for clemency in a letter to the officer who will review the case , The New York Times reported on Monday.

The officers, all but one of an eight-member military jury, condemned the conduct of the US government in the letter on behalf of Majid Khan, a Baltimore high school graduate turned Qaeda messenger.

“Mr. Khan has been subjected to physical and psychological abuse far beyond approved improved interrogation techniques, instead of being closer to the torture practiced by the most abusive regimes in modern history,” said wrote the jury members in a letter to Col. Jeffrey Wood of the Arkansas National Guard, the convening authority of the military commission.

“This abuse had no practical value in terms of intelligence or any other tangible benefit to American interests. Instead, it is a stain on America’s moral fiber; Mr. Khan’s treatment at the hands of US personnel should be a source of shame for the US government, ”they continued, according to the Times.

Read Pakistani Guantanamo Detainee Tells “US Military Tribunal CIA Torture”

The harsh reprimand comes after the Guantanamo Bay inmate testified last Thursday about the abuse he suffered while in the CIA prison network overseas between 2003 and 2006.

He said he had been the victim of drowning, enemas and forced feedings, as well as other forms of sexual and physical abuse.

Majid Khan said that although he cooperated with the authorities, he continued to suffer more abuse. “Instead, the more I cooperated, the more I was tortured,” he said.

The seven jury members wrote that Khan had been a “vulnerable target for recruiting extremists” because he was in shock over his mother’s death at the time. They argued that he was no longer a threat of extremism and that he had remorse for his past actions.

The jury sentenced Khan to 26 years, the lowest allowed according to the court’s instructions.

Sentencing was delayed for nearly a decade after his guilty plea to give Khan the time and opportunity to cooperate with federal and military prosecutors, so far behind the scenes, in federal and military terrorism cases. .

In the years that followed, prosecutors and defense attorneys clashed in court cases over who would be called to testify about Khan’s abuse during CIA detention, and how.

The panel received nine letters of support for Khan from family members, including his father and several siblings – American citizens who live in the United States – as well as his wife, Rabia, and daughter, Manaal. , who was born in Pakistan and live there.

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