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Profile: Moazzam Begg

 
  

Positions that Moazzam Begg has held:



 

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Moazzam Begg actively participated in the following events:

 
  

January 31, 2002      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       Moazzam Begg is arrested by Pakistani officials in his home in Islamabad, Pakistan. In a phone call he is able to make to his father, he says US officials are also present. Shortly thereafter, Pakistani lawyers file a habeas petition on his behalf in a Pakistani court. [Sources: Petition for writ of habeas corpus for Moazzam Begg and Feroz Abbasi, 7/2/2004]
People and organizations involved: Moazzam Begg
          

March 7, 2002-March 14, 2002      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       According to a later habeas petition, a Pakistani court orders the Pakistani interior minister to produce Moazzam Begg before the court on March 7, which the minister refuses to do. On March 14, the court again orders the minister to produce Begg, this time under threat of sanctions. Again, the interior minister refuses to comply with the order. Meanwhile, Begg's lawyer Abdur Rahman Saddiqui claims that Pakistan's intelligence agency (ISI) and the CIA have captured Begg and that the ISI is interrogating him. Perhaps by this point, Begg has already been sent to Afghanistan. [Sources: Petition for writ of habeas corpus for Moazzam Begg and Feroz Abbasi, 7/2/04]
People and organizations involved: Moazzam Begg
          

December 3, 2002      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       Mullah Habibullah, a 30-year-old Afghan from the southern province of Oruzgan, dies of complications related to “blunt force trauma” while in detention at the US base at Bagram. [New York Times, 9/17/2004; Guardian, 3/7/03; Washington Post, 3/5/03; BBC, 3/6/03] When Habibullah, reportedly the brother of a former Taliban commander, arrived at the US air base, he was reportedly already severely hurt. Despite his condition, according to one account, he was isolated “in a ‘safety’ position [stress position], with his arms shackled and tied to a beam in the ceiling.” He was left in that position for days, but regularly checked on. [Knight-Ridder, 8/21/2004] At some point, Sgt. James P. Boland, a guard from the Army Reserve's 377th MP Company from Cincinnati, allegedly watched as a subordinate beat Habibullah. [New York Times, 9/17/2004] His legs were struck so forcefully, according to one death certificate, it complicated his coronary artery disease. Another certificate will say the beating led to a pulmonary embolism, which is a blockage of an artery in the lungs, often caused by a blood clot. [USA Today, 5/31/2004] The beating of Habibullah was likely witnessed by British detainee Moazzam Begg, who will later say he witnessed the death of “two fellow detainees at the hands of US military personnel” while at Bagram (see July 12, 2004). [New York Times, 10/15/2004; The Guardian, 10/1/2004] On December 3, Habibullah is found dead, still hanging in his shackles. [BBC, 3/6/03; Washington Post, 3/5/03; New York Times, 9/17/2004; Guardian, 3/7/03] In charge of the military intelligence interrogators at Bagram at this time is Capt. Carolyn A. Wood. According to an anonymous intelligence officer, Wood should be aware of what is happening to prisoners at Bagram since interrogations take place close to her office. The intelligence officer will recall hearing screams and moans coming out from the interrogation and isolation rooms. [Knight-Ridder, 8/21/2004]
People and organizations involved: Mullah Habibullah, Moazzam Begg, James P. Boland, Carolyn A. Wood
          

February 6, 2003      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       After a year of detention at Bagram, which appears to be unusually long, [7/26/2004] Moazzam Begg is transferred to Guantanamo. [BBC News Online, 10/1/2004]
People and organizations involved: Moazzam Begg
          

February 13, 2003      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       Moazzam Begg is put in solitary confinement at Guantanamo and remains there until at least September 2004, which is a period of almost 600 days. [The Guardian, 10/1/2004] The same day, he signs a statement stating that he is a member of al-Qaeda, [The Independent, 1/30/2005] which he later claims he made “under threats of long term imprisonment, summary trials, and execution.” [BBC News Online, 10/1/2004] His confession is made to the same US interrogators who questioned him at Bagram. “They reiterated the previous threats,” Begg alleges, “of summary trials, life imprisonment and execution.” [The Independent, 1/30/2005]
People and organizations involved: Moazzam Begg
          

July 3, 2003      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       The government announces that President Bush has named six Guantanamo detainees to be tried before a military commission. They are David Hicks from Australia, Moazzam Begg holding dual British and Pakistan nationality, Feroz Abbasi from the UK, Salim Ahmed Hamdan and Ali Hamza Ahmad Sulayman al-Bahlul, both from Yemen, and Ibrahim Ahmed Mahmoud al-Qosi from Sudan. [Department of Defense, 7/3/2003]
People and organizations involved: David Hicks, Feroz Abbasi, Salim Ahmed Hamdan, Ibrahim Ahmed Mahmoud al-Qosi, Moazzam Begg, George W. Bush, Ali Hamza Ahmad Sulayman al-Bahlul
          

July 12, 2004      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       British detainee Moazzam Begg, being held in Guantanamo, manages to send a handwritten four-page letter uncensored by US authorities. Begg's lawyers in the UK describe this as an “oddity.” His solicitor Stafford Smith says the letter must have been released either “by mistake or because someone in the US has a conscience.” In the letter, Begg describes having been subjected to “pernicious threats of torture, actual vindictive torture, and death threats, amongst other coercively employed interrogation techniques.” This happened “particularly, though unexclusively in Afghanistan.” Interviews, Begg writes, “were conducted in an environment of generated fear, resonant with terrifying screams of fellow detainees facing similar methods. In this atmosphere of severe antipathy towards detainees was the compounded use of racially and religiously prejudiced taunts. This culminated, in my opinion, with the deaths of two fellow detainees (see December 3, 2002) (see December 10, 2002) at the hands of US military personnel, to which I myself was partially witness.” [The Guardian, 10/1/2004]
People and organizations involved: Stafford Smith, Moazzam Begg
          

January 12, 2005      Torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere

       The Pentagon announces that the US has agreed to release five prisoners from Guantanamo. They include Mamdouh Habib, an Australian, and the four remaining Britons: Feroz Abbasi, Moazzam Begg, Jamaal Belmar and Martin Mubanga. British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw says the Britons' release is the result of his “intensive and complex” discussions with the US. [New York Times, 1/12/2005] Australian Attorney General Philip Ruddock says the Australian government requested Habib's repatriation to Australia after the US said it did not intend to bring Habin to trial. [ABC News, 1/11/2005]
People and organizations involved: Jamaal Belmar, Feroz Abbasi, Moazzam Begg, Mamdouh Habib, Martin Mubanga, Jack Straw, Philip Ruddock
          

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