Written by 23:09 World

War Crimes Hearing Gives Public Virtual Look Inside a Secret C.I.A. Prison

The public on Monday got its first view of a C.I.A. “black site,” including a windowless, closet-size cell where a former Qaeda commander was held during what he described as the most humiliating experience of his time in U.S. custody.

The former commander, Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi, led the 360-degree virtual tour of the site, Quiet Room 4, during a sentencing hearing at Guantánamo Bay that began last week. He described being blindfolded, stripped, forcibly shaved and photographed naked on two occasions after his capture in 2006.

He never saw the sun, nor heard the voices of his guards, who were dressed entirely in black, including their masks.

Mr. Hadi, 63, was one of the last prisoners to be held in the overseas black site network where the George W. Bush administration held and interrogated about 100 terrorism suspects after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Even now, years after the Obama administration shut the program down, its secrets remain. But the details are slowly emerging at the national security trials of former prisoners at Guantánamo Bay.

In court on Monday, spectators saw Quiet Room 4, a 6-foot-square empty chamber, which Mr. Hadi said resembled the place he was held for three months — minus a bloodstain that was on the wall of his cell then.

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Last modified: 20 June 2024
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