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Video Released Of Canadian Detainee's Guantanamo Interrogation


A video grab released by lawyers for Canadian terror suspect Omar Khadr, who is shown being questioned at Guantanamo Bay

A video grab released by lawyers for Canadian terror suspect Omar Khadr, who is shown being questioned at Guantanamo Bay

TORONTO -- Omar Khadr, the only Western prisoner still held in the U.S. prison on Guantanamo Bay, pleaded with Canadian interrogators to be allowed home in videos released by his lawyers.

The videos of Khadr's interrogations by officials from Canada's CSIS foreign intelligence division, released after a long legal battle, show how Khadr, a teenager at the time, initially believed that the Canadians were there to help him.

"Omar appears happy and cooperative on Day 1," lawyer Nathan Whitling wrote in a statement accompanying the five hours of video. "But by Day 2 (February 14, 2003), Omar has come to understand that the CSIS agents are not going to help him, and he is in despair."

The pictures offer a rare glimpse into the Guantanamo Bay facility, where the United States is holding some 265 prisoners in conditions severely criticized by human rights groups.

Documents released earlier this month showed that U.S. authorities deprived Khadr of sleep ahead of the interview, putting him in a "frequent-flyer program," where he was moved every three hours to make him more likely to talk.

Khadr faces charges of throwing a grenade that killed a U.S. soldier and wounded another during a fight at an Al-Qaeda compound in Afghanistan in 2002. Aged 15 at the time, he was shot twice in the back.

Still pictures from the video show him filmed at plain wooden table in an apparently windowless cell. He wears an orange prison jumpsuit, and at times buries his head in his hands, or pulls at his hair in apparent frustration.

A Canadian judge ruled last month that Khadr had a right to see descriptions of interviews that the Canadians conducted with him, to help him prepare for his trial at Guantanamo.

The judge said that in his view, steps taken by U.S. authorities before the 2004 visit by the Canadian officials violated international human rights law.
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