Page last updated at 01:57 GMT, Saturday, 29 January 2005

Documents show Guantanamo claims

Feroz Abbasi
Feroz Abbasi was one of four men released without charge this week

US authorities have given the BBC details of allegations against the four British men freed from Guantanamo Bay.

Documents claim the men, released on Wednesday, all received some form of military training in Afghanistan.

Lawyers and families of the men have denied similar claims and question the validity of confessions or evidence possibly obtained under duress.

Martin Mubanga, Feroz Abbasi, Richard Belmar and Moazzam Begg claim they were tortured while in Cuba.

The Pentagon has described the four as a continuing security threat, but they were freed without charge after being questioned on their return to Britain.

'Al-Qaeda camps'

Transcripts of tribunal hearings, case reviews and correspondence between the Foreign Office and lawyers were made available.

The US Justice Department documents included allegations the men trained in al-Qaeda camps.

But evidence to back up these claims is not provided, says BBC security correspondent Gordon Corera.

Mr Abbasi said that he believed the camp he attended was military and not a terror camp.

Handwritten autobiography

The documents also included the handwritten autobiography of Mr Abbasi, with a note explaining that he wanted to get his side of the story on the record.

It ranges from his childhood in Croydon to his time in Afghanistan.

The autobiography details Mr Abbasi's anguish, low self-esteem and that he felt people walked over him and treated him like dirt.

Of his time in Afghanistan, Mr Abbasi draws a picture of how a jihad group works, writes about weapons training and firing a Kalashnikov, and targeting and destroying an enemy vehicle.

But the autobiography cannot be relied upon as accurate and could not be used in a British court as evidence, said the BBC's Margaret Gilmore.

Lawyers for the former detainees have declined to comment about the documents, although they have previously denied similar allegations.

Michael Ratner, the president of the Centre for Constitutional Rights who has acted for the men in the US, said the allegations were "rubbish" and just an attempt to justify why they were held.



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