An Australian terrorism suspect soon to be repatriated by US authorities after three years at the Guantanamo Bay military prison in Cuba was the victim of atrocities fit for a concentration camp, his lawyer claimed in reports yesterday. \nStephen Hopper, in comments reported yesterday in the Sydney Morning Herald, alleged that Mamdouh Habib was tied to the ground while a naked prostitute menstruated on him. \nHopper also claimed that interrogators told the Egyptian-born Sydney resident that they had killed his wife and three children. \n"The Americans used prostitutes as tools in their interrogations," Hopper said. \nHabib was arrested in October 2001 in Pakistan and accused of aiding Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda terrorist network. \nAttorney General Philip Ruddock said earlier this month that Habib would be released by US authorities and would not be charged under Australian law on his return. \nHe would escape prosecution because anti-terrorism legislation did not come into force until 2002 and could not be applied retrospectively. \n"Mr. Habib remains of interest in a security context because of his former associations and activities," Ruddock said. \nThe release of Habib would leave one Australian at Guantanamo Bay. \nDavid Hicks, 29, is one of only four detainees to be charged and to have faced court. He is on trial before a US military tribunal for terrorism offenses. He will not get a death sentence and would serve his jail term in Australia if found guilty. \nHicks was captured in November 2001 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, fighting with the Taliban and has been inside the Guantanamo Bay prison since then.
The onset of summer has sparked a rise in incidents of “mask rage” in South Korea as more hot and bothered commuters either refuse to wear face coverings or leave parts of their faces exposed. In South Korea, Japan and other countries in East Asia, widespread mask wearing has been cited as one possible explanation for the region’s relative success in bringing the COVID-19 pandemic under control. South Korea, one of the first countries outside China to be affected by the virus, flattened the coronavirus curve in April, although it is now struggling with dozens of daily cases, mainly in and around
‘WOULD NOT COMPLY’: The company’s user data are kept in Singapore and it would not turn the data over to Beijing even if asked, TikTok chief executive Kevin Mayer said Social media app TikTok has distanced itself from Beijing after India banned 59 Chinese apps in the country, according to a correspondence seen by Reuters. In a letter to the Indian government dated on Sunday last week and seen by Reuters on Friday, TikTok chief executive Kevin Mayer said the Chinese government has never requested user data, nor would the company turn it over if asked. TikTok, which is not available in China, is owned by China’s ByteDance, but has sought to distance itself from its Chinese roots to appeal to a global audience. Along with 58 other Chinese apps, including Tencent
PLAYING THE VICTIM? A Chinese spokesman sent a statement to Australian media saying that Beijing had ‘irrefutable’ evidence of Canberra’s widescale espionage Australia yesterday unveiled the “largest-ever” boost in cybersecurity spending, days after Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison spoke out about a wave of state-sponsored attacks suspected to have been carried out by China. Morrison and government officials said the country would spend an additional A$1.35 billion (US$928 million) on cybersecurity, about a 10 percent hike, taking the budget for the next decade to A$15 billion. The largest chunk of the new money would help create 500 jobs within the Australian Signals Directorate, the government’s communications intelligence agency. Morrison on June 19 said that a “state-based actor” was targeting a host of
The Philippine army chief yesterday expressed outrage over the fatal police shooting of four soldiers, including two officers, and demanded justice, as both sides provided contrasting accounts of the killings. Philippine Secretary of the Interior and Local Government Eduardo Ano, a retired military chief of staff who now oversees the national police, ordered that the police involved in Monday’s violence in Jolo in Sulu Province be disarmed and restricted for investigation. Police said the soldiers were killed in a “misencounter” with a group of police officers. The army said that the two officers and two enlisted men were on a mission against