Tag Archives: isolation

Omar Ahmad (Abdur) Rahman: Date Unknown (For Surely, they will Kill Me…)

My message and will to the blessed muslim nation Oh honorable brothers! Oh Muslims in all parts of the world!

Surely the US government has found in my imprisonment an opportunity;
an opportunity to defile the honour of a Muslim, snatching away his dignity and respect. They’ve placed me under siege, not only physically, but also psychologically.

I’ve been placed in isolation. I’ve been forbidden contact with any Arabic speakers. Days, weeks, months pass and there’s no one I can talk to, and no one to talk to me.

I’ve been deprived of everything inside my cell even media players or a radio. If it wasn’t for the recitation of the Quran, I would have had many physiological problems. In this oppressive siege, cameras are included throughout my cell. They monitor me continuously throughout the day, they even watch me washing my private parts during bathing and using the toilet. They don’t stop there, they exploit my blindness to achieve their vile objectives, for they frisk me by stripping off my clothes, just as I was born, and look at my private parts, front and rear.

What do they search for? Drugs and explosives? This happens before and after every visit. This is so shameful, it makes me prefer the earth to split in half and swallow me whole over their filthy actions. But as I said, to them this is an opportunity they seized to defile the dignity of a Muslim and his honor on this earth. I am also prevented from performing Jumu’a prayers, Eid and any contact with other Muslims! All of this is forbidden to me! They give me false justifications and they make up null excuses.

The prison wardens neglect my personal condition e.g. haircuts and nail-cutting for months. They also force me to wash my underwear. I soak, wash, rinse and hang it, I find it hard! Moreover, I feel the danger of this situation. For surely, they will kill me… they will! Especially now that I’m separated from the world. No one sees what they add in my food, my drink! They could use a slow method to kill me, they could poison my food or medicine or inject me with something. They could drug me with something which would kill me or drive me crazy.

My brothers, if they kill me – which they will – escort my Janazah, and deliver my corpse to my fam- ily. But never forget my blood, never forsake it! Instead take revenge upon them for me in the most severest and violent of manners! And remember that a brother of yours spoke the truth and was killed in the path of Allah.

These few words are my testament to you.
Wassalamu Alaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Wali Khan Amin Shah: January 4, 2012

As-salamu alykum,

I still have four more days before my phone restriction ends, I don’t know why things still very slow here, but I hope soon things will change and I will get some news from my family, I finally got some batteries for the hearing aid, and it is good to hear again!!

The weather is alternating between cold and warm, but doesn’t stay one way or the other for long, our brothers in the SHU are not requesting recreation at all!! It is some times easier to just go to sleep in the morning and miss the recreation while in the Hole, I didn’t have outside recreation from 1996 to early 2001 and then again from 2002 to late 2004, after that I was able to get few hours of fresh air a week.

I didn’t turn down any opportunity to get any fresh air, here alhmdulliah we can walk out and get as much as we want of fresh air, I am worried that the brothers in the SHU will be there for some time and it is extremely important to keep high morale in the Hole, without fresh air and some sun I think it will take its toll on them, may Allah help us all.

I just fixed myself a cup of coffee and am heading out to walk a little. My younger neighbor injured his wrist and we didn’t play any volleyball for five days, even the walk we used to have outside is hurting him because of the cold, I will give him a week or so and he will be back asking for a match.

I will write tomorrow by the will of Allah, so far I got no e-mails or snail-mail, salamu alykum.


Tags: , , , , ,

Morocco condemns Ali Aarrass to fifteen years imprisonment on torture evidence

On 24 November 2011, the trial of Ali Aarrass (a Belgian citizen) finally took place before three judges of the Rabat (Morocco) court sitting at Salé. But despite the absence of any objective evidence,[1] including statements from his alleged accusers, Ali Aarrass was convicted and sentenced to fifteen years’ imprisonment, solely on evidence obtained by torture.

Without addressing any of the legal and factual arguments which the defence team mounted over three hours of oral submissions and in writing, the judges reached their decision in barely an hour. Worse still, although the hearing was scheduled to resume at 4pm, the magistrates didn’t wait but pronounced their sentence in the absence of the defence lawyers, Ali Aarrass’s family and many supporters. Ali Aarrass found himself facing the judges alone to hear their iniquitous verdict. Even the interpreter had not been brought back to court, so Ali Aarrass did not understand the judgment, which had to be translated for him by his lawyers in the cells of the court. The defence team could only interpret this as another way of putting pressure on Ali Aarrass. After suffering torture, punitive conditions of detention and then extreme isolation, Ali Aarrass is not permitted any confidential interview with his lawyers.

It’s worth recalling that at the same time, the Moroccan authorities have refused to investigate Ali Aarrass’ complaint of being tortured during his police detention. Elementary measures should have been taken before rejecting the complaint as unfounded; Ali Aarrass should have had a proper hearing, he should have been allowed to confront all the officers who were involved with him during his police detention, expert medical evidence should have been sought and his medical condition compared with his Spanish medical records … but nothing was done. Is this surprising? Not really. The same judges presided in the ‘Belliraj affair’ and handed down extremely heavy sentences despite persistent allegations of torture and numerous violations of fair trial processes, recorded both by NGOs[2] and official observers.[3]

Shamefully for Morocco, its judges persist in practices which violate the most fundamental human rights. The judges have even been disowned by King Mohamed VI, who has pardoned several of those sentenced to twenty years’ imprisonment in the ‘Belliraj’ case.

Will justice ever prevail in Morocco? Whether or not, the fight continues for Ali Aarrass, who has already lodged a complaint with the UN Committee Against Torture and the Committee on Human Rights.


[1] The Moroccan file contains nothing: no search warrant of Ali’s home, no phone intercepts, no forensic evidence …

[2] In particular the Arab Commission on Human Rights, ‘Report on the trial of six political prisoners in Morocco – the Belliraj affair’, 10 December 2009. 

[3] Such as the Belgian consul, and see the wikileaks document from the US ambassador in Rabat, ‘Landmark terrorism case raises human rights’.


Leave a comment

Posted by on December 18, 2011 in News Items


Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Enseveli dans l’Oubliette des terroristes français

Few months ago, the European Court of human rights confirmed the admissibility of a complaint made by Babar AhmadHaroon Rashid Aswat and Syed Talha Ahsan. Their extradition to the US was prevented since the stringency of the conditions at ADX Florence (a “supermax” prison) for what might be the rest of their lives, inhumane or degrading treatment. The plight of Bradley Manning, the alleged wikileaks “leaker”, has also shed light upon the infamous treatment of detainees placed in solitary confinement in US custody.

Many international instruments have affirmed that prisoners have the right to be dealt with in a way compatible with human dignity and that they should be safe from any form of degrading treatment. The UN Human Rights Committee, the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and the European Commission on Human rights have stated that isolation, in certain conditions, can constitute a cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment. Different factors need to be taken into account such as the stringency of the measure, its duration, the objective pursued and the effects it has on the person. We sometimes stay focused on the American carceral system due to its reputation. However, a text written by Djamel Beghal in the darkness of his cell shows us the ignominy of solitary confinement in French prisons.

Djamel Beghal has spent nine years under this regime. He has been transferred from cell to cell, from prison to prison, always living under the same harsh conditions. His account is shameful and horrendous.

Djamel spends 22 or 23 hours alone in his cell. He is allowed a recreation time in a minuscule space, always alone and indoors. He can never see another inmate. When he is displaced for any reason, the floor or the whole prison is blocked. Only the senior guard is permitted to talk to him or even to open the door of his cell. The shower and the recreational space are situated just in front of his dungeon and going there allows no more than five steps across the corridor. He is taken there by three to five guards.

The vastest room in which Djamel was incarcerated barely reached 9 meters square. He measured one of his cells in a Parisian prison with a small ruler. Result: 5 meters square. His cell is composed of an iron bed with an uncomfortable fireproof mattress. Bed sheets are torn and blankets have a strong and unpleasant smell, giving rise to skin allergies. Every single furniture is fixed in the wall. The table is as high as his chest. Even eating or writing becomes a painful exercise.  Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 20, 2011 in News Items


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Western ‘Justice’: Civil Secular Democratic Destruction of Family

A united family, despite everything

The 15th of July will mark the tenth year of our family’s separation. Hamza was 9 years old, Mahdi 6 years old and Zeynab 3 years old. Since the terrible event, they forever keep in their hearts the memory of the life of freedom, protection, joy and adventure that their father provided them with. They never stop asking for his return, in their own ways. Sometimes it is through heavy silences that speak louder than words, other times; it is through never ending talks, or through tears that remain unshed, due to modesty. But the faith in which they are growing up has permitted them to endure the situation and remain hopeful, despite everything.

They are now 18, 15 and 12 years of age, respectively.

After our return to France in March 2002, six months after the incarceration of my husband, we decided – my husband and I – that I would go back with the children to the United Kingdom due to the difficulties encountered in France regarding their education. There, I would be able to stay closer to them; which was vital, given the family predicament. It is my right, no matter what others want to make me believe, to dedicate my life to my house and children, before all else. It is a long term investment, and a decision which we do not regret today.

At first, we visited Djamel three to four times per year, for one, two or three weeks depending on the school holidays, without being allowed more than three visits per week. We were offered a lodging here and there, by relatives or friends, depending on the availability of our hosts. The journey is long, and by car, most of the time. The visits themselves required a lot of organisation. Firstly, the size of the room reserved for the visits had to be taken into account. This would determine whether we were going to be able to visit Djamel all together, or whether we had to leave someone behind; which left a bitter taste. To add to this, there was the sheer difficulty of holding a whole family in this cell, due to its size and the children’s age.  Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 13, 2011 in Collateral Damage


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Djamel Beghal: Date Unknown (My Story)

In summary, it is the same again and again …

If you are Muslim, more or less young, bearded, attending a mosque, who has childhood friends, neighbours or co workers sharing the same convictions, if you communicate between each other – like everyone else – by phone … This, then, becomes an ideal “terrorist” cell, a network of “sleepers” to perfection, which, tomorrow might need to make one of JT and the press’s headlines. This cell can then be yet another addition to the hunt bag of French terrorist hunters. These hunters, who in reality are the antiterrorist judges, specialise in this field. In the legal domain, they are specialists only in the morbid arts of burying the living in the graveyards of solitary confinement and legal torture, as well as in the arts of making false records, resemblances of cases and fantastical accusations.

As for the sentences, they distribute the maximum possible on those who are culturally educated and well instructed to make them seem like the heads. They make the rest look like a bunch of blunt knives and give them just under the maximum sentence, which holds the same torments of destroying their familial, professional and social lives.

Recent revelations in Wikileaks, relayed by the daily Le Monde, 1 December 2010, written by Piotr Smolar, whose courage I salute (it is rare to see such evidence from a journalist when it comes to judicial French injustice committed with impunity against, what is meant by term, Islamists), finally gave credible evidence and a voice to the somewhat muffled cries that I have been consistently pushing from the abyssal areas of `total isolation and legal torture’ of the French prisons for the past ten years!  Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 13, 2011 in Letters from Djamel Beghal, Risala


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Palestinian Prisoners’ hunger strike enters 9th day

Hundreds of Palestinian and Arab prisoners in Israeli jails on Wednesday continued their hunger strike for the eighth day as the Israeli prison administration continues to reject all the prisoners’ demands, Palestinian media reported.

Palestinian Minster of Prisoners, Issa Qaraqa, said that a meeting held at the Rimonim Jail between the prisoners’ representatives and Israeli intelligence officers failed because the Israeli Prisons Authorities did not want to respond to the detainees’ demands. Prisoners representative Jamal al Rjoub said the meeting was fruitless because the Israeli side rejected all the prisoners’ demands, which he said are considered ‘normal absolute rights.’

According to the Palestine News Network (PNN), the Israeli prison administration is allegedly attempting to end the strike by isolating a number of prisoners into cells and stopping family visits as a punishment. Several prisoners have warned that the strike will expand if their demands are not met.

The main demands of the prisoners are to end the policy of isolation and of collective punishment. They also want that Israeli authorities allow their families to visit them without restrictions and shackles.  Read the rest of this entry »

Leave a comment

Posted by on October 6, 2011 in News Items


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,