The chief of revolutionary forces in Tripoli, Abdel Hakim Belhadj
A newly published report has revealed a close relationship between the United States and the regime of fugitive Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.
In an interview with The Independent
published on Friday, the chief of revolutionary forces in Tripoli, Abdel Hakim Belhadj, said that he had been directly "tortured by CIA agents" in Thailand after being first detained at an airport in Malaysia in 2004.
He noted that "if I ever have the chance I will take legal action" against those responsible.
Belhadj was kept in Abu Salim prison in Tripoli. He said, "I was in prison for seven years during which I was subjected to torture as well as solitary confinement. I was even denied a shower for three years."
The disclosure of Libya's intelligence files reveals embarrassing details of cooperation between the US spy agency and other Western intelligence services with Gaddafi's brutal security services in pursuit of opponents, the report said.
Belhadj further pointed out that in the wake of 9/11 attacks, the US administration reacted by pursuing “any organization with an Islamic agenda.”
He strongly denied that he and the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG), which he helped found in 1995, had ever been allied to al-Qaeda terrorist network.
"We never had any link to al-Qaeda. The fact that we were in the same country, Afghanistan, [as al-Qaeda] does not mean we had the same goal,” Belhadj said.
He stressed that the sole aim of the LIFG was always to overthrow Gaddafi's regime.
Libya has been the scene of intense fighting between government troops and revolutionary forces since a revolution seeking to topple Gaddafi began in mid-February.