Britain ‘still aiding detention at Guantanamo’

The UK is still providing a “helping hand” to the detention of terror suspects at Guantanamo Bay, according to a new report.

Amnesty International UK accuses European governments of complicity and inaction over renditions and torture flights to the Cuba-based US prison camp.

The report draws special attention to Ethiopian national and UK rendition victim Binyam Mohamed, who Amnesty claims was rendered in 2002, tortured in Morocco and has spent the last four years at Guantanamo.

The human rights organisation’s director Kate Allen has written to foreign secretary David Miliband highlighting Mr Mohamed’s plight.

“From all accounts Binyam Mohamed is in a desperate state and we’re asking Mr Miliband to use his influence with the American authorities to seek Binyam’s immediate transfer to a less harsh environment,” she said.

“Guantanamo is built on an entire network of rendition and secret detention – it’s yet another example of how everything about Guantanamo is a travesty of justice.

“European governments have played a disreputable role in rendition and they are still in a state of denial about this. It’s time for proper investigations and for the full renditions story to come out.”

Amnesty International UK is calling on the UK government to condemn the practice of rendition, initiate independent investigations, ensure oversight of intelligence agencies, refuse to assist improper transfers, bring perpetrators to justice and provide reparation for past victims.

A spokesman at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) told the UK authorities wrote to US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice last August to request the release of five Guantanamo detainees with links to the UK.

“Three were returned in December. We continue to push for the release of the remaining two, including Mr Mohamed.”