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A report issued by the US Senate confirms that the United States operated a detention facility for suspected terrorists in Lithuania in 2005-2006, lawyer of a former prisoner, Saudi Arabia-born Palestinian national Abu Zubaydah, told the European Court of Human Rights.
US Senate report confirms Lithuania hosted CIA prison, lawyer says
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"Simply on the basis of the information in the Senate report itself, there are numerous clear indications of agreements reached between Lithuanian officials and the CIA, and of large sums of money changing hands in exchange for support," lawyer Helen Duffy, who represents the Palestinian man in the trial against Lithuania, said in a letter handed to BNS on Friday.

In a report published in December 2014, the US Senate did not specify the countries that hosted CIA detention centres, but human rights watchdogs believe Lithuania accommodated the centre which is referred to as "violet" in the document.

The US Senate report "makes clear that a Lithuanian detention site was constructed in 2003. It confirms, however, that the detention site Violet was in fact opened in early 2005 and closed in 2006," reads the document submitted to the Strasbourg court on Thursday.

The lawyer maintains that the information available leaves "little room for doubt" about existence of a CIA prison in Lithuania.

The thorough US Senate report of more than 6,000 pages remains classified. A censored version of 524 pages was published in December 2004. The lawyer urged the court to seek to see the full version of the report.

The plea in the case was submitted to Strasbourg in October 2011.

Lithuanian MP Arvydas Anušauskas, who headed the 2009 parliamentary investigation, told BNS on Friday that the published part of the US Senate report leads to no categorical conclusions about imprisoned persons.

"The lawyer is doing her job. The review of the Senate commission report contains many new facts about transportation. I would say it may prove the fact that the detention site was in Lithuania; however, it does not provide an equally clear answer about persons held there or specify the persons," Anušauskas told BNS.

He noted that the US had stopped subjecting suspected terrorists to drastic torture in 2003.

"If the report were published in full, we would see specific names and arguing with the lawyer would no longer make sense," he added.

Abu Zubaydah is the second person whose lawyers maintain to have collected evidence of their detention in Lithuania. Prosecutors are currently investigating the possible detention of a Saudi Arabian citizen, Mustafa al-Hawsawi, in Lithuania, as well.

The suspected secret CIA detention facility may have operated in Antaviliai, an area some 15km from the capital Vilnius.

BNS
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