File:Salt Pit.jpg

Template:Coord The Salt Pit is the codename of an isolated clandestine CIA black site prison, and interrogation centre in Afghanistan. It is located north of Kabul and functioned as a brick factory prior to the US invasion of Afghanistan. In the winter of 2005 the "Salt Pit" became known to the general public over two incidents.

November 20, 2002 death in custodyEdit

The recently assigned CIA case officer in charge of this prison directed the Afghan guards to strip Gul Rahman naked from the waist down, and chain him to the floor of his unheated cell, and leave him overnight, according to The Associated Press. Rahman was captured in Islamabad on Oct. 29.[1][2][3][4][5][6] In the morning the suspect was dead. A post-mortem examination determined that he froze to death. The Washington Post described the CIA camp commandant as "newly minted", on their first assignment. ABC News called the CIA camp commandant "a young, untrained junior officer". The Washington Post's sources noted that the CIA camp commandant had subsequently been promoted. Rahman was buried in an unmarked grave and his friends and family were never told of what happened to him but were later learned of his fate in 2010 after an AP story revealed Rahman had died at Salt Pit.[1]

Khalid El-Masri Edit

Khalid El-Masri, a German citizen, was kidnapped from the Republic of Macedonia and rendered to Afghanistan.[7] El-Masri shared the same name as a suspect on the US's terrorist watchlist, and this triggered the suspicion of Macedonian authorities that he might be traveling on a forged passport.

A team of American security officials were dispatched to the Republic of Macedonia, where they kidnapped El-Masri without regard to his legal rights under Macedonian law.[8] It took over two months for the CIA official who ordered his arrest to take the step of verifying whether El-Masri's passport was legitimate.[9] El-Masri described being beaten and injected with drugs as part of his interrogation.

On Thursday, May 18, 2006 U.S. Federal District Judge T.S. Ellis, III in Washington dismissed a lawsuit El-Masri filed against the CIA and three private companies allegedly involved with his transport, explaining that a public trial would "present a grave risk of injury to national security." [9]

On Tuesday, October 9, 2007 the U.S Supreme court threw out El-Masri's appeal against the earlier judgement, without comment.[10]

Location photographedEdit

Artist/geographer Trevor Paglen claims to be the only civilian to have taken a photo of the Salt Pit. Using El-Masri's testimony, Paglen located the Salt Pit using Google Earth and traveled to Afghanistan where he photographed the facility using a long-distance lens.[11] He claims that he knew he was on the right track when he passed a goat herder wearing a baseball cap with the logo of Kellogg, Brown & Root on it. The photo was shown at Bellwether gallery in New York in 2006 along with other items documenting Paglen's attempts to trace secret government projects. It was produced in an edition of one, and bore a price tag of $20,000.[12]


External links Edit

Template:CIAPrisons Template:AfghanPrisons

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