Questions About Germany's Role in Khaled el-Masri Rendition

by TChris

Khaled el-Masri was a victim of the CIA's rendition program. TalkLeft described him as "a Lebanese-born German who was pulled from a bus on the Serbia-Macedonia border in December 2003 and flown to Afghanistan, where he said he was beaten and drugged. He was released five months later without being charged with a crime." It turned out to be a case of mistaken identity.

The U.S. eventually admitted its mistake to Germany. But Germany may not have clean hands in Masri's kidnapping and detention.

[O]n Monday in Neu-Ulm near Munich, the police and prosecutors opened an investigation into whether Germany served as a silent partner of the United States in the abduction of ... Khaled el-Masri ....

The action came after a two-and-a-half-hour meeting at police headquarters in which Mr. Masri told the police that he was "90 percent" certain that a senior German police official was the interrogator who had visited him three times inside the prison in Kabul but had identified himself only as "Sam." The German prosecutors said Monday that they were also investigating whether the German Embassy in Skopje, Macedonia, had been notified about Mr. Masri's kidnapping within days of his capture there, but then had done nothing to try to help him.

"Sam" says he was "on holiday" somewhere in Germany, but he can't remember exactly where he vacationed.

August Stern, the Munich-based federal prosecutor who is leading Germany's criminal investigation of Mr. Masri's kidnapping, said his investigators were trying to determine whether the German Embassy had been told about Mr. Masri's capture, and then sent a German agent to the American prison in Kabul to talk with him.

The Interior Ministry denies that any member of Germany's secret services visited Masri. Investigators at the Council of Europe are looking into a broader pattern of "quiet cooperation between the C.I.A. and its counterparts in European countries," including Germany.

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    This could be quite bad for el-Masri's case against US officials for his extraordinary rendition case. Maher Arar's case ,a href="http://upagainstthelaw.blogspot.com/2006/02/maher-arars-case-challenging.html">was thrown out last week, in part because of the embarassment it could cause to Canadian officials if they had to admit complicity in his rendition.

    Arg. That link was here.

    Re: Questions About Germany's Role in Khaled el-Ma (none / 0) (#3)
    by Andreas on Tue Feb 21, 2006 at 10:37:55 AM EST
    Two months ago the WSWS published this article: The case of Khalid al-Masri German government complicit in the criminal activities of the CIA By Elizabeth Zimermann and Ulrich Rippert, 17 December 2005