FORT MEADE, Md. (AP) — A Guantanamo detainee accused of orchestrating the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole asked a military judge Wednesday to order the release of a Senate report on the CIA’s use of harsh interrogation techniques.
Lawyers for Abd al Rahim al-Nashiri made the argument during a pretrial hearing at the U.S. Navy base in Cuba. Attorney Richard Kammen asked Col. James Pohl to order the release to the defense team of the Senate Intelligence Committee’s entire 6,000-plus page report, not just a declassified version being prepared for public release.
Prosecutor Navy Cmdr. Andrea Lockhart said prosecutors have asked for the report but don’t know when they might get it or how much they would have to share with the defense. She told Pohl it was too soon to order release of the report because it’s still in the declassification review process.
Al-Nashiri’s lawyers are seeking details about his treatment while he was held for several years in secret CIA prisons. A CIA inspector general’s report says he was waterboarded and threatened with a gun and power drill. Prosecutors cannot use evidence obtained by coercion.
The Senate Intelligence Committee’s report was designed to examine all detainees in CIA custody and almost certainly includes a lengthy look at al-Nashiri’s treatment.
The committee voted last month to order the declassification of the report’s executive summary and conclusions. Since then, the CIA has been reviewing those sections to black out any information that may compromise national security. No time frame for the public release of the documents has been provided.
The committee’s investigation concludes the CIA tortured suspects and gained little in valuable intelligence. The CIA disputes those findings. But the disagreement has taken on added political sensitivity amid mutual accusations of illegal snooping related to the production of the report.
The Justice Department has received criminal referrals against both sides but is unlikely to intervene.
Last month, Pohl ordered prosecutors to share with defense lawyers details about al-Nashiri’s experience in the CIA “black sites” after his arrest in 2002. Pohl planned to hear arguments Wednesday afternoon on the prosecution’s request that he reconsider that order.
Al-Nashiri’s trial is set for February.
The Associated Press is covering the hearing from a closed-circuit television link at Fort Meade, Maryland.
The attack killed 17 U.S. sailors, injured 42 others and tore a massive hole into the side of the guided-missile destroyer.
Associated Press writer Bradley Klapper in Washington contributed to this report.
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