18 DECEMBER

THE ROUTINE USE OF TORTURE AGAINST DETAINEES IN ADEN

18 December 1965 – Medical reports by the Aden Director of Health Services backed allegations of torture made against the British run interrogation centre at Fort Morbut in Aden. A representative of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was eventually allowed to visit the prison to investigate on the understanding that he would not be allowed to see the prisoners and that any report would be kept confidential and shown only to approved officials within the British government.

In July 1966 a representative of Amnesty International arrived in Aden and was denied any permission to visit. However he was able to interview family relatives of those detained as well as former prisoners. Their testimonies revealed many shocking but seemingly routine examples of torture including

  1. Giving hungry detainees food and then removing it just as they started to eat.
  2. Beating and twisting the genital organs of the prisoners
  3. Locking detainees in filthy toilets
  4. Refusing access to toilets so as to force prisoners to soil their cells

Some of the allegations were later corroborated by a corporal, G.S. Lennox, who was interviewed in the Sunday Times on 29 October 1966 and had himself witnessed a detainee being repeatedly beaten and prodded in the genitals until he fell unconscious.

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