Did CIA censor lawyer’s letter to President Obama?



By JOSEPH FITSANAKIS| intelNews.org |
A prominent British lawyer representing a Guantánamo detainee has said a letter he sent to Barack Obama was censored by US intelligence officials. The lawyer, Clive Stafford Smith, represents Binyam Mohamed, a resident of Britain, who is currently imprisoned by US authorities at the Guantánamo Bay camp. Mr. Mohamed was abducted in 2002 by Pakistani agents, who delivered him to US intelligence. US officials employed the controversial practice of extraordinary rendition and had Mr. Mohamed secretly imprisoned in Morocco and Afghanistan before taking him to Guantánamo. The Ethiopian-born Mohamed says he was brutally tortured while in Moroccan and US custody. Earlier this month, two British judges overseeing Mr. Mohamed court challenge in the UK, accused the British government of keeping “powerful evidence” about Mr. Mohamed’s torture secret, after being threatened by Washington that it would “stop sharing intelligence about terrorism with the UK”. Following this accusation, Mr. Mohamed’s lawyer sent Barack Obama a letter (.pdf), outlining the “truly medieval abuse” suffered by Mr. Mohamed, and urging the US President to release all information on the case that is in CIA’s possession. Nevertheless, before the letter was delivered to the President by his aides, “substantial parts were blanked out (.pdf) so the President could not read it”, reportedly to “protect [Mr. Obama] from criminal liability or political embarrassment”. Following revelation of the censorship incident, Mr. Stafford Smith sent Mr. Obama a second communiqué, noting the “bizarre reality” of America’s “commander-in-chief […] being denied access to material that would help prove that crimes have been committed by US personnel. This decision is being made by the very people who you command”, the British lawyer tells Mr. Obama in his second letter. The White House has so far refused to comment on the case.

About intelNews
Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

One Response to Did CIA censor lawyer’s letter to President Obama?

  1. Dr. Monkey says:

    It’s sad when the person with the highest security clearance in the world can’t read his own mail. What kind of world are we living in?

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