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Saudis detained in US claim maltreatment by prison authorities

"I was arrested like a murderer. They put cuffs on my hands and
legs and took me to jail."
Tuesday, January 8, 2002 . Posted: 01:24:58 (AEDT)

Saudis detained in US claim maltreatment by prison authorities

A number of Saudis freed from US jails following weeks of
detention after the September 11 attacks, claim they were
maltreated and "psychologically abused" by prison authorities.

The men, many of whom have already returned to the kingdom
permanently, spoke of arbitrary detention, trials and deportation
orders.

"Armed FBI agents raided my flat in Stamford, Florida," aviation
student Adel al-Oteibi said.

"I was arrested like a murderer. They put cuffs on my hands and
legs and took me to jail."

Mr Oteibi says he was held for 50 days over accusations his father
was a religious extremist, failure to attend a students' meeting
on September 12 and repeatedly hiring planes to fly.

Mr Oteibi claims while nothing was proven, a judge still ordered
he be deported.

US authorities last week released 12 Saudis who were detained
after hijacked airliner were flown into New York's World Trade
Centre and the Pentagon in Washington.

According to the manager of the Saudi ambassador's office in
Washington, Ahmad al-Qattan, 173 Saudis were arrested in the
United States.

Only 54 remain behind bars, mostly for immigration offences.

Several hundred Saudis, many of them students, have since returned
to the kingdom.

King Fahd ordered Saudi universities to admit all students in
programs similar to their studies.
 
 

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