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Reply #29: Abu Omar Case or Imam Rapito (kidnapped Imam) affair [View All]

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DrDebug Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-28-07 05:50 AM
Response to Reply #27
29. Abu Omar Case or Imam Rapito (kidnapped Imam) affair
Summary: The plane used was owned by the same company who also used to own this drug plane. The owners have changed, but both drug planes and CIA rendition planes had the habit of continously changing owners in an effort to obscure the real owners of the plane.

The Abu Omar Case (or Imam Rapito affair - "Kidnapped Imam affair") refers to the abduction and transfer in Egypt of the Imam of Milan Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, also known as Abu Omar, and successive vicissitudes. The case has been narrated by the international press as one of well known and better documented case of extraordinary rendition carried out by the CIA in the context of the "global war on terrorism" declared by the Bush administration.

Abu Omar has been abducted on February 17, 2003 at Milan by the CIA(1). According to the enquires reconstruction and what has been told by Nasr himself, the imam has been kidnapped while reaching a mosque and transported to the Aviano Air Base, from which he was transferred to Egypt, where he was secluded, interrogated and allegedly tortured and abused (2). The CIA operations has interrupted surveillance carried on by Italian authorities concerning Nasr about his alleged participation to Islamic organizations. Hassan Nasr was released by Egyptian justice in February 2007, who considered his detention "unfounded," and has not been indicted for any alleged crime in Italy.

The Italian government originally denied having played any role in the abduction. However, this is contradicted by investigations carried on by Italian prosecutors Armando Spataro and Ferdinand Enrico Pomarici, who have indicted 26 CIA agents, including the Rome station chief and head of CIA in Italy until 2003, Jeffrey W. Castelli, and Milan station chief Robert Seldon Lady, as well as SISMI (Italian intelligence) head General Nicol Pollari, his second Marco Mancini as well as station chiefs Raffaele Ditroia, Luciano Di Gregori and Giuseppe Ciorra(3). Referring to the Italian military intelligence agency, the Italian press has talked of a "CIA-SISMI concerted operation."

The Italian justice has transmitted extradition requests for the indicted American citizens to the Italian Ministry of Justice, then headed by Roberto Castelli, in order to transmit them to Washington. However, Roberto Castelli had always refused to forward the demand for extradition, which provoked contention with the prosecuting authority of Milan. At the end of his mandate in 2006, Castelli declared that he had not transmitted the acts. Despite Romano Prodi's center-left coalition winning the April 2006 general elections, the extradition requests have not been forwarded. Some members of the government supported the forwarding of the extradition requests.

However, Prodi's government has introduced a recourse before the Constitutional Court, alleging a violation of state secret by the enquirers during the investigations. Current Justice Minister Clemente Mastella has declared that he will wait for the resolution of the hanging issue before deciding on the forwarding, or not, of the requests. The trial is due for June 2007. (Postponed until October 2007)


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