Libya rendition claims: Cameron calls for inquiry

Last Updated: Tuesday, September 6, 2011 - 08:56

London: Allegations that British
intelligence agency MI6 was involved in the rendition of
Libyan terror suspects should be examined by an independent
inquiry, Prime Minister David Cameron has said.

Cameron`s comments came after papers suggesting close
ties between MI6, the CIA and the toppled Libyan leader Moammar
Gaddafi regime were found in Tripoli last week.

A spokesman for Cameron said that the existing Detainee
Inquiry into rendition was "well placed" to investigate the
allegations reported in recent days.

The inquiry is headed by Sir Peter Gibson, a judge who
also serves as the intelligence services commissioner.

Cameron had set up the Gibson inquiry in July 2010 to
probe allegations that secret services were complicit in the
torture of extremists on foreign soil after the September 11,
2001 attacks on the United States.

"It`s not clear precisely what the allegations amount
to," the spokesman said.

"We don`t have a clear picture from these documents,
which is precisely why an inquiry like the [Detainee] inquiry
might be well placed to consider the issue," the BBC quoted
Cameron`s spokesman as saying.

Meanwhile, the Gibson inquiry today said it would look
into new claims that Britain was involved in rendition of
suspects to Libya and into alleged complicity in the
mistreatment of suspected terrorists.

"The inquiry is looking at the extent of the UK
government involvement in or awareness of improper treatment
of detainees including rendition," the Gibson inquiry said in
a statement.

"We will therefore of course be considering these
allegations of UK involvement in rendition to Libya as part of
our work. We will be seeking more information from government
and its agencies as soon as possible."

Among the files were documents suggesting both Britain
and the US were complicit in a plan that led to the detention
and torture of a senior Libyan rebel commander Abdel-Hakim
Belhaj.

Belhaj, then a terror suspect but now in charge of the
Libyan capital`s military forces, says he was tortured after
being arrested in Bangkok.

Belhaj has demanded an apology from both Britain and
the US.

"What happened to me was illegal and deserves an
apology," he said.

PTI



First Published: Monday, September 5, 2011 - 19:27

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