Britain has apologised to Libyan former rebel Abdul Hakim Belhadj and his wife Fatima Boudchar over the role of British spies in their 2004 rendition from Thailand to Libya, where Belhadj was then tortured by Muammar Gaddafi’s henchmen.
Belhadj, who was a known opponent of Gaddafi’s regime, and his pregnant wife were abducted by U.S. CIA agents in Thailand and then illegally transferred to Tripoli with the help of British spies.
“The UK government believes your accounts. Neither of you should have been treated in this way,” Prime Minister Theresa May wrote to the couple in a letter made public on Thursday.
“The UK government’s actions contributed to your detention, rendition and suffering ... On behalf of Her Majesty’s Government, I apologise unreservedly,” May wrote.
Boudchar, who after her rendition was detained in Libya until shortly before giving birth, was in the public gallery in parliament in London with her son to hear Britain’s attorney general make a statement about the case.