Britain briefed my torturers, says ex-Guantanamo detainee

Secret telegrams show the link between US and UK officials in the case of Binyam Mohamed

Speaking for the first time since his release from Guantanamo Bay, Binyam Mohamed today claims that horrific torture he experienced while being held was directly influenced by the British Government.

Mr Mohamed, 30, a British resident, said secret telegrams sent by MI5 to the CIA show that the men responsible for his torture were being influenced by questions from the British security service in London.

He describes how, after his capture in Pakistan in 2002, he was flown to Rabat in Morocco, where his chest and genitals were repeatedly cut by Moroccan interrogators working to American instructions. The claims will add to pressure on the Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, to release all the secret documents which human rights groups say will tell the full story of Britain's alleged collusion in the rendition and torture of Mr Mohamed.

Jack Straw, the Secretary of State for Justice, also faces questions over what he knew, when he was Foreign Secretary, about MI5's involvement in the US rendition. The former Guantanamo prisoner, released two weeks ago, said that his torturers were being fed specific questions relating to his movements from the years he had lived in London. Speaking from a country house in the Home Counties, where he is still recovering from his ordeal, Mr Mohamed remembers clearly the moment when MI5's questions were first channelled by his Moroccan interrogators. He said: "They started bringing British files to the interrogations – not one, but several of them, thick binders, some of them containing sheaves of photos of people who lived in London. It was obvious the British were feeding them questions about people in London."

The High Court in London has already been told that Mr Mohamed was interviewed in Pakistan by an MI5 officer who introduced himself as John. But until now the allegation against Britain was that it only ever provided background information to the Americans during his subsequent detention in Morocco.

The new evidence is contained in verbatim notes taken by Mr Mohamed when he was given access to unclassified telegrams from a separate legal action he is fighting in the US courts. One MI5 memo sent during his detention in Pakistan suggests the British saw themselves as central to his interrogation: "We believe that our knowledge of the UK scene may provide contextual background useful during any continuing interview process. This may enable individual officers to identify any inconsistencies during discussions. This will place the detainee under more direct pressure and would seem to be the most effective way of obtaining intelligence on Mohamed's activities/plans concerning the UK."

Reprieve, the legal charity representing Mr Mohamed, believes this is the first clear evidence of the UK actually volunteering to help the US to "break" Mr Mohamed. But even after his rendition to Morocco, the documents show, MI5 continued to help to direct his interrogation. In September 2002, one document reveals, MI5 received a report from the US of an interview with Mr Mohamed. He was rendered to Morocco on 21 July, so at this time he had been there for more than two months. UK officials purported not to know where he was, but they knew he was in a third country, says Reprieve.

Weeks later, on 5 November, came the strongest evidence to emerge to date of British collusion in Mr Mohamed's rendition and torture, in the form of a telegram from MI5 to the CIA. Headed "Request for further detainee questioning", it stated: "This information has been communicated in confidence to the recipient government and shall not be released without the agreement of the British government. We would be grateful if the following can be passed to... Binyam Mohamed."

It went on to ask that his interrogators show him and ask him questions about a "photobook recently sent over". Large portions of the rest of the telegram have been redacted, but it added: "We would be grateful if the following could be put to Binyam Mohamed, in addition to the questioning above. Does Mohamed know [two lines redacted]? What was the man's name? Can Mohamed describe him? Where did they meet? Where was the man from? Who facilitated his travel from the UK? Where did this man go? What were his intentions? We would appreciate the opportunity to pose further questions."

Mr Mohamed said: "When I realised that the British were co-operating with the people who were torturing me, I felt completely naked... They sold me out."

The UK Government said that it neither condones nor colludes in torture. The Foreign Office said that the US security services have threatened to stop sharing intelligence with Britain if the courts order the public disclosure of evidence relating to Mr Mohamed.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
A monstrous idea? Body transplants might no longer be science fiction
Science An Italian neurosurgeon believes so - and it's not quite as implausible as it sounds, says Steve Connor
Demba Ba (right) celebrates after Besiktas win on penalties
footballThere was no happy return to the Ataturk Stadium, where the Reds famously won Champions League
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
arts + ents
Mia Freedman, editorial director of the Mamamia website, reads out a tweet she was sent.
arts + ents
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Arts and Entertainment
The write stuff: masters of story-telling James Joyce, left, and Thomas Hardy
arts + ents...begging to differ, John Walsh can't even begin to number the ways
Image from a flyer at the CPAC event where Nigel Farage will be speaking
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper

£23000 - £26000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This small, friendly, proactive...

Recruitment Genius: Photographic Event Crew

£14500 - £22800 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developers - .NET / ASP.NET / WebAPI / JavaScript

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Software Developer is required to join a lea...

Austen Lloyd: Corporate Tax Solicitor - City

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: A first rate opportunity to join a top ranking...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower