The Associated Press has new information, including the name of the victim, on one of the few known cases of detainee deaths at the hands of the CIA:
More than seven years ago, a suspected Afghan militant was brought to a dimly lit CIA compound northeast of the airport in Kabul. The CIA called it the Salt Pit. Inmates knew it as the dark prison. Inside a chilly cell, the man was shackled and left half-naked. He was found dead, exposed to the cold, in the early hours of Nov. 20, 2002.The Salt Pit death was the only fatality known to have occurred inside the secret prison network the CIA operated abroad after the Sept. 11 attacks. The death had strong repercussions inside the CIA. It helped lead to a review that uncovered abuses in detention and interrogation procedures, and forced the agency to change those procedures.
Little has emerged about the Afghan’s death, which the Justice Department is investigating. The Associated Press has learned the dead man’s name, as well as new details about his capture in Pakistan and his Afghan imprisonment.
The man was Gul Rahman (gool RAHK’-mahn), a suspected militant captured on Oct. 29, 2002, a U.S. official familiar with the case confirmed. The official said Rahman was taken during an operation against Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin, an insurgent group headed by Afghan warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar (gool-boo-DEEN’ hek-mat-YAR’) and allied with al-Qaida.
Rahman’s identity also was confirmed by a former U.S. official familiar with the case, as well as by several other former and current officials. A reference to Rahman’s death also turned up in a recently declassified government document.
It appears that there was no punishment for the CIA officers and officials responsible for the death.
March 28th, 2010