LONDON (AP) — Leaked U.S. military documents reveal that a Guantanamo Bay detainee was freed after informing on 123 other prisoners, despite concerns about the reliability of his evidence, a British newspaper reported Tuesday.
The Guardian in Great Britain, the New York Times and El Pais in Spain are publishing details of more than 750 leaked U.S. military dossiers on terrorist suspects held at Guantanamo. They reveal that the detainees ranged from close associates of Osama bin Laden to seemingly innocent men held even though they were judged to pose little threat.
The Guardian said the prolific informer, a Yemeni man captured in Pakistan in December 2001, gave detailed information about al Qaeda activity in Afghanistan’s Tora Bora mountains and identified other detainees as militants.
However, the documents also noted that the man often changed his story and that some of his claims could not be verified.
Nonetheless the files praised his cooperation and show that he was recommended for release in 2008 and sent to Spain. The Guardian said his current whereabouts are unknown.
The newspaper said the files also reveal that the United States believed an alleged al Qaeda operative suspected of bomb attacks in Pakistan was an informant for British intelligence.
The leaked files — known as detainee assessment briefs — describe the intelligence value of the detainees and whether they would be a threat to the United States if released. So far, 604 detainees have been transferred out of Guantanamo, while 172 remain.
The Pentagon has condemned the publication of the documents, which it said were obtained illegally by the secret-spilling WikiLeaks website.
The New York Times said it had obtained the files from another source and shared them with other news organizations.
The Guantanamo files give details of al Qaeda planning and confirm that London’s Finsbury Park Mosque was considered a haven for extremists in the years before 2001, when it was a base for radical preacher Abu Hamza al-Masri.
Tuesday’s New York Times said the files also reveal al Qaeda’s desire to launch more plots against the United States after Sept. 11, 2001, including aircraft attacks on the West Coast.
The plans — none of which was executed — included discussions of plots to hijack cargo planes, hack into bank computers and cut the cables holding up the Brooklyn Bridge.
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