Rendition allegations target CIA

STRASBOURG, France, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- The European Court of Human Rights says it is ready to deliver judgment in the case of a man who claims he was a victim of a "rendition" operation by the CIA.

A rendition is the transfer of a person from one country to another without going through the courts. The case is el-Masri vs. "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia."


The court sits in Strasbourg, France.

Khaled el-Masri, a German national of Lebanese origin suspected of alleged terror ties, was born in 1963 and lives in Ulm, Germany, the court said.

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El-Masri's filing says the Macedonian police arrested him in December 2003, kept him against his will for 23 days in a hotel in Skopje and then handed him over to CIA officers.

The CIA officers put him, blindfolded and chained, on a special flight to Afghanistan, where he remained in detention until May 2004, el-Masri said. He claimed he was beaten, kicked and threatened while interrogated in a small, dirty, dark concrete cell in which he was kept at a brick factory near Kabul.

His court filing said he began a hunger strike in March 2004, but was force-fed through a tube. After he started a second hunger strike in May 2004, he was sent blindfolded and handcuffed by plane to Albania and eventually to Germany.

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In Germany, he contacted a lawyer and filed several claims.

The European Court of Human Rights was established in Strasbourg by the Council of Europe Member States in 1959 to deal with alleged violations of the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights.

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