Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Update: Aafia Siddiqui's Eldest Child Located

The Washington Post is reporting that US officials say the child detained with Aafia Siddiqui in Ghanzi last month appears to be her 11 year old son, Ahmad. The whereabouts of her other son and daughter (ages 5 and 7) remain unknown. US authorities maintain that Siddiqui was not in American custody before her detention in Afghanistan last month, and that, according to CIA spokesperson George Little: "any suggestion that the CIA would imprison her children is wrong and offensive." (The CIA didn't have her: but did another U.S. agency? Little didn't speak to that, apparently.) Siddiqui's family and attorney have expressed concern that she and her children were detained at a black site for the past five years. “Something is really dirty here. Everything about the government’s story smells,” said Elizabeth Fink, Siddiqui’s attorney. “Whatever happened to this woman is terrible, and it’s incumbent on us to find out what it was."

While the Post article details that Ahmad was detained by the Afghan National Security Directorate, it also notes that Fink says her client will petition the federal court to have custody of her son given to her brother, a resident of Texas. The article does not explain how the U.S. government has obtained jurisdiction of the child.

Another question unexplored: if a person is detained at a black site, who has custody?

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