Yemeni Inmate Claims Months of Abuse in CIA Cells

He tells Salon he was held at 'black sites'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 15, 2007 7:37 AM CST
An alleged al-Qaeda suspect is held in a detention area. Mohamed Farag Ahmad Bashmilah was arrested in Indonesia as a suspected al-Qaeda member, and spent time in Jordanian custody before being passed...   (Getty Images)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – A Yemeni man claims he was held for 19 months in secret CIA prisons, shackled in tiny cells with no idea why he was there or if he would ever be free again, bombarded by rap music or white noise around the clock. Mohamed Farag Ahmad Bashmilah says he was picked up as an al-Qaeda suspect in 2003 and held at the the agency's infamous "black sites" before being released without charge or explanation, he tells Salon.

He says he wasn't beaten often, but subjected to psychological torture. He attempted suicide multiple times and was surprised to receive psychiatric counseling afterward—before interrogations began again. He called his imprisonment "almost like being inside a tomb. Whenever I saw a fly I was filled with joy," he said. But "I would wish for it to slip out so it would not be imprisoned."