Judge Says Ex-Guantánamo Prisoner, Tortured by Al-Qaeda, Taliban and U.S., Can’t Sue

Thursday, December 29, 2011
Abdul Rahim Abdul Razak al-Janko
Abdul Rahim Abdul Razak al-Janko has been denied justice by the country that wrongfully imprisoned him for seven years.
The former Guantánamo detainee, a Kurd from Syria, sued the U.S. government after being freed in October 2009, and after American officials failed to present any evidence linking him to terrorism. Janko claimed he was tortured by Americans who allegedly urinated on him, slapped him, threatened him with fingernail removal, deprived him of sleep and subjected him to extreme cold and stress positions..
But a federal judge threw out Janko’s lawsuit, saying: “War, by its very nature, victimizes many of those caught in its wake.”
“Our legal system was never designed to provide a remedy in our courts for these inevitable tragedies,” wrote U.S. District Judge Richard Leon, who previously referred to Janko’s ordeal as a “Kafkaesque nightmare.”
Janko’s tragic odyssey began in Afghanistan, where al-Qaeda tortured him because he was suspected of being an American spy. He was subjected to electric shocks and near-drowning. Then he was held prisoner by the Taliban for 18 months, until U.S. forces freed him—and eventually shipped him to Guantánamo.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
U.S. Dodges Torture Suit by One of Kandahar Five (by Ryan Abbott, Courthouse News Service)
Abdul Rahim Abdul Razak Al Janko v. Robert M. Gates et al. (U.S. District Court, District of Columbia) (pdf)

Syrian Sues after Being Tortured by Both Al-Qaeda and United States (by Noel Brinkerhoff and David Wallechinsky, AllGov) 


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