International Law

European court orders Poland to pay damages to two prisoners held in secret CIA jail

The European Court of Human Rights has ordered Poland to pay damages to two terrorism suspects who were interrogated at a secret CIA jail in the country.

The ruling is the first public determination by a court that the CIA operated a secret “black site” in a foreign country after the Sept. 11 attacks and mistreated terrorism suspects held there, the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.) reports. BBC News, Reuters and the Associated Press also have stories.

The court said Poland violated the European Convention on Human Rights by failing to prevent torture or degrading treatment of two prisoners now held at Guantanamo Bay, the stories say. The court also said Poland should not have permitted the prisoners to be transferred to a country where they could face the death penalty, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The court awarded damages of about $135,000 to Abd al-Rahim al-Nashiri, accused of planning the attack on the USS Cole, and $175,000 to Abu Zubaydah, who was accused of helping run a terrorist training camp. The Wall Street Journal says Abu Zubaydah was never charged with a crime.

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