Friday, July 11, 2014

Omar Hamzayavich Abdulayev

Nationality: Tajik
ISN: 257

The following is a summary of the allegations against Omar Hamzayavich Abdulayev found in publicly available US military documents. If US military documents about this prisoner are inaccurate or misleading then this summary will be as well. The introduction to this set of summaries explains some of the terms used below.   

Omar Abdulayev was transferred from Pakistani to US custody on January 3, 2002. The Pakistani government gave the US four notebooks in his handwriting they said he was captured with.

One notebook covered map symbols, military tactical symbols, rifle and pistol marksmanship, and Russian anti-aircraft weapons. The second covered explosives and poisons. The third covered how to hold secret meetings, terrorist cell organization, intelligence collection, and counterintelligence. The final notebook listed names of militants and serial numbers of the weapons issued to them.

Abdulayev told interrogators a former member of the Afghan military gave him books on military matters because Abdulayev wanted to be a soldier someday. He said he copied them in his own handwriting because the books were old.

The unclassified summary of Abdulayev’s 2007 Administrative Review Board says, “the journal notes are too disjointed and filled with gaps and errors to have been copied.” It goes on to say Abdulayev, “almost certainly composed these journals as a student at a terrorist training camp in Afghanistan or Pakistan.”

Omar Abdulayev was sent to Guantanamo February 9, 2002.

Adel Al Zamel said Abdulayev told him that Abdulayev worked with Abu Zubaydah and Ibn Al Shaykh Al Libi. Abdulayev never told interrogators he knew either of them. There is no mention in Abdulayev’s DAB that either of the two men, both of whom were previously prisoners of the CIA, acknowledged a relationship with Abdulayev, as they had with other prisoners at Guantanamo.

Adel Al Zamel said Abdulayev told him he was trained in poisons at a base in Kabul by Al Qaeda explosives and poisons expert Abu Khabab Al Masri. Al Zamel said as part of his training Abdulayev had poisoned rabbits and saw a video depicting a dog being placed in a room with “smoke” that killed the dog.

Ravil Mingazov also told interrogators he received poisons training that included the testing of poisons on rabbits. Mingazov would later say he lied about being trained on poisons based on what he had heard about actual training so he wouldn’t be sent back to Russia to be persecuted.

Adel Al Zamel also made allegations against Obaidullah and Bostan Karim and said after his release that he was threatened by interrogators who placed a gun on a table during an interrogation.

Omar Abdulayev told his CSRT that his family fled the civil war in Tajikistan in 1992 when he was 12 or 13 years old. He said he had completed the 6th grade when they left. He said his family went to live in a refugee camp in Afghanistan. He said that when his father went back to Tajikistan, he was killed by soldiers.

He said that after his father’s death his mother took the family to another refugee camp in Afghanistan where all men were required to join the Islamic Movement of Tajikistan, a militant group that was fighting against the Tajik government. He said that in late 2000 or early 2001 the family moved to the Babu refugee camp in Pakistan due to fighting in Afghanistan.

A foreign government service, likely a Pakistani intelligence agency, reported that Babu was a terrorist training camp. Abdulayev said Babu used to be a terrorist training camp before the Pakistani government shut it down and turned it into a refugee camp.

Omar Hamzayavich Abdulayev told his CSRT that he was captured by the intelligence service of Pakistan at a market in Pakistan in November 2001. He said they asked him for money and that when he told them he didn’t have any money, they put him in a prison basement. He said they gave him books and told him that if he copied them they would let him go. He said that after he said no, they beat and tortured him for a month, until he had no choice. He said they transferred him to another prison before turning him over, with the notebooks, to American forces.

He said he told his American interrogators what happened, but they didn’t believe him and beat him up.

Abdulayev told his CSRT, accurately, that the US paid Pakistan thousands of dollars for terrorist suspects. Abdulayev said, “The Pakistanis are making business out of this war.”

He said the Pakistani government, “knew that the more evidence they created, the more dangerous they made me, the more money they would make from the Americans.”

The unclassified summary of Abdulayev’s 2007 ARB says Abdulayev, “does not wish to return to Tajikistan, Pakistan, or Afghanistan because all of these governments are not good. He stated he would find his mother and seek asylum in whatever country would take him.”

In January 2010 Obama’s Guantanamo Task Force recommended Omar Abdulayev for, “transfer to Tajikistan subject to appropriate security measures.” 

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