Skip to main content

Poland pays damages to Palestinian and Saudi detained by CIA

Poland says it 'is applying the ECHR's decisions' which awarded Zubaydah $148,000, and al-Nashiri $113,500
Central Intelligence Agency logo in the lobby of CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia, in 2008 (AFP)

Poland has paid part of the damages to two men detained in a secret CIA prison on Polish soil before they were transferred to Guantanamo Bay, the foreign ministry told AFP on Monday.

Last July, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) condemned Poland for hosting secret CIA prisons, saying it knowingly abetted the unlawful imprisonment and torture of Abu Zubaydah, a Palestinian, and Saudi citizen Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri in 2002-2003.

It awarded Zubaydah 130,000 euros ($148,000), while al-Nashiri was awarded 100,000 euros ($113,500).

"Poland is applying the ECHR's decisions," foreign ministry spokesman Marcin Wojciechowski said, without specifying the names of the beneficiaries.

"In the case of one person, the money was paid into a bank account indicated by his lawyers, in the case of the other, hit by international sanctions, we requested the creation of a judicial deposit," he added. 

Poland has also asked the United States to rule out the death penalty for the two men in line with an EU-wide ban on capital punishment, Wojciechowski told AFP.

The Polish government declined to omment on the allegations of hosting secret CIA jails in the early 2000s, insisting that an investigation into the matter opened by Polish justice authorities in 2008 was still underway.