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Xray inmate saw habib dazed and bleeding { May 22 2004 }

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X-Ray inmate 'saw Habib dazed and bleeding'
By Martin Chulov and Ian Gerard
May 22, 2004
A SECOND former Guantanamo Bay prisoner has claimed that Australian Mamdouh Habib has been beaten by his US jailers.

In one instance, the alleged abuse caused him to bleed from his ears and mouth.

The new claim comes from British national Jamal al-Harith, who was released from Cuba's infamous Camp X-Ray anti-terror prison in March and who said he saw Habib dazed and bleeding after being assaulted by guards.

In an interview from London, Mr al-Harith also reaffirmed claims from compatriate Tarek Derghoul that Habib now believes his Sydney-based wife and two children have been killed by United States agents.

"I saw him bleeding with my own eyes, from his mouth and his ears," he said. "He was very depressed especially about his family. He was taken away several times by guards and came back crying."

Prime Minister John Howard yesterday said the federal Government would investigate allegations that Habib and a second Australian man, David Hicks, had been abused by their American captors -- contrary to claims by senior ministers that both had been treated humanely.

Both Habib and Hicks are currently being held by the US in Cuba but are yet to be charged, despite being held for two years on suspicion of terrorist involvement.

Mr Howard said Foreign Minister Alexander Downer had contacted the Australian embassy in Washington and were awaiting a response from US military officials. "We don't hear a lot about this issue from Hicks and Habib or their lawyers until the allegations surfaced regarding American behaviour in Baghdad," he said, referring the abuse by US troops of jailed Iraqis at Baghdad's infamous Abu Ghraib prison.

"Now that doesn't alter the fact that we regard any mistreatment as unacceptable, and we are seeking advice and further assurances.

"In the past they have been freely given and we will ask for their assurances again."

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Xray inmate saw habib dazed and bleeding { May 22 2004 }

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