Romania, Lithuania hosted CIA jails: court

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled Romania and Lithuania allowed the detention and abuse of a Saudi and a Palestinian at secret US prisons.

The Strasbourg-based court said Abd al-Rahim Al Nashiri, a Saudi national later sent to Guantanamo Bay, was detained and abused in Romania between September 2003 and October 2005, and urged Romania to investigate and punish perpetrators.

Romania denies hosting such CIA facilities. There was no immediate reaction from the government.

Al Nashiri's lawyer Amrit Singh called Thursday's ruling "a sharp rebuke to Romania's shameful attempts" to conceal its hosting of a secret CIA prison.

The court also said Lithuania hosted a secret CIA detention facility from February 2005 to March 2006 where Abu Zubaydah, a Palestinian suspected of being a planner for the September 11 attacks, was detained.

It ruled that Lithuania allowed him to be moved to another CIA detention site in Afghanistan, "exposing him to further ill-treatment." He is currently detained at Guantanamo Bay.

Lithuanian authorities said they would consider appealing the court's decision and may also investigate the claims again.

Justice Minister Elvinas Jankevicius told reporters "we will take a decision after carefully examining," the ruling.

Vytautas Bakas, the chairman of the parliamentary committee for national security and defence, said he would propose opening a new probe.

A 2009 investigation in Lithuania concluded that Lithuania's intelligence agency helped the CIA set up two small detention centres in the Baltic country, but did not determine whether the facilities were actually used in the interrogation of terrorism suspects.