INTERNATIONAL

Rumsfeld approved use of coercive methods: Time

Secret logs obtained by magazine reveal interrogation methods

NEW YORK: United States Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld approved the use of 16 strong coercive methods in the interrogation of select detenus in Gitmo camp in Guantanamo Bay, including forcible injections with fluids, being grilled in proximity to military dogs and straddling by a woman soldier, a media report said on Monday.

One of the detenus on whom these strategies were used for interrogation was a top Saudi suspect Mohammed al Qahtani, who is believed to be the so-called 20th hijacker, a compatriot of Osama bin Laden and a man who had tried to enter the U.S. in August 2001 to take part in the terror strikes, the magazine said, quoting secret logs obtained by it.

Critical period

The logs spanned 50 days in the winter of 2002-03, from November to early January, a critical period at Gitmo, during which the 16 interrogation techniques were approved by Mr. Rumsfeld for use on a select few detenus, including Al-Qahtani, Time magazine said. The logs give a detained account of the measures used against the captive in the prison, many of which have been criticised by the rights groups. The log showed that interrogators poured bottles of water on Al-Qahtani's head when he refused to drink and called this game ``Drink Water or Wear It.'' Time said it obtained the first documented look inside the highly classified realm of military interrogations since the Gitmo Camp opened.

The document is a secret 84-page interrogation log that details the interrogation of "Detainee 063" at Guantanamo Bay, the magazine said.

The log records every time Al-Qahtani ate, slept, exercised or went to the bathroom and every time he complied with or refused his interrogators' requests.

Muscular strategy

Al-Qahtani's resilience under pressure in the fall of 2002, Time said, led top officials at Gitmo to petition Washington for more muscular counter-resistance strategies. After the new measures were approved, it said the mood in Al-Qahtani's interrogation changed dramatically. The interrogation sessions lengthened. The quizzing started at midnight, and when Detainee 063 dozed off, interrogators roused him by dripping water on his head or playing music.

He also had to stand for the playing of the U.S. national anthem. His head and beard were shaved. He is subjected to a drill known as Invasion of ``Space by a Female,'' and he becomes especially agitated by the close presence of a woman.

— PTI

Recommended for you