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Habib 'beaten until leaving Guantanamo'

The West Australian
December 3, 2007

Mamdouh Habib says he was beaten until his final days in the US detention facility at Guantanamo Bay and has accused Australian officials of having "no humanity" for failing to intervene.

Mr Habib is suing Nationwide News over a February 2005 newspaper column that implied he made false claims about torture.

A jury found he had been defamed by the article, and Nationwide News is now mounting a defence of truth and justification in the NSW Supreme Court.

Mr Habib said he was beaten from the day of his arrest in Pakistan in 2001 until his final moments in 2005 at Guantanamo Bay, where he claimed he was experimented upon.

"People have no humanity, they have been using us for experiments," he told the court.

"They using us like rats and dogs and animals.

"Every single injection, I take it by force."

Mr Habib denied a number of claims made by an Australian team which visited Guantanamo Bay in May 2002, including statements allegedly made by him that he was being treated well and had no major complaints.

"I say that's not true, I never been treated well in Guantanamo Bay, or Egypt, or Pakistan," Mr Habib said.

"They drag me (to interrogations) maybe half a kilometre in the gravel," he said.

Mr Habib said he told "every single person I saw" about his torture and mistreatment and Australians were "definitely" involved.

"Australians, they aware of my torture and they be involved, definitely, with my torture," he said.

Alec Leopold, acting for Nationwide News, asked Mr Habib whether he was accusing Australian officials of being inhumane.

"If Australian team was there when I was tortured, when I was given injection, yes," he replied.

The hearing continues.

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