CIA alleged abductee faces brawl charges

5th February 2007, Comments 0 comments

5 February 2007, Ulm, Germany (dpa) - Khaled el-Masri, the German whose abduction as a supposed terrorist caused an international furore, faces a charge of assault after punching a welfare manager, prosecutors said. El-Masri, a Lebanese-born Muslim, allegedly lost his temper Monday when the counsellor rebuked him for repeatedly failing to show up for lessons. El-Masri, 43, is unemployed and was being retrained as a truck driver at public expense. This week, German authorities issued warrants for the arrest

5 February 2007

Ulm, Germany (dpa) - Khaled el-Masri, the German whose abduction as a supposed terrorist caused an international furore, faces a charge of assault after punching a welfare manager, prosecutors said.

El-Masri, a Lebanese-born Muslim, allegedly lost his temper Monday when the counsellor rebuked him for repeatedly failing to show up for lessons. El-Masri, 43, is unemployed and was being retrained as a truck driver at public expense.

This week, German authorities issued warrants for the arrest of 13 persons believed to be CIA agents. The 13 allegedly seized el-Masri on December 31, 2003 in Macedonia and took him to Afghanistan to torture. El-Masri is separately suing in US courts for compensation.

Prosecutors in his hometown, Ulm, confirmed an assault inquiry. A newspaper, Suedwest Presse, said a training firm had been hired to groom el-Masri for a job, but his attendance at the driving course which began in early December had been poor.

The counsellor spent three days in hospital with his injuries after being beaten up, the newspaper said.

Manfred Gnjidic, el-Masri's lawyer, told Deutsche Presse-Agentur dpa, "Masri is very sorry about what happened. If he did lose his control, because of the severe trauma he has been through, he is going to apologize to the victim and take responsibility for it."

Despite this week's arrest warrants, Munich officials admit they do not even know where in the world the 13 are, nor if they are listed under their true or assumed names. The United States had not responded to requests to identify them.

DPA

Subject: German news

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