Abdelaziz Kareem Salim al-Noofayee Summarized Detainee Unsworn Statement
|Abdelaziz Kareem Salim al-Noofayee (ISN# 687) - Unsworn Detainee Statement
|Transcript of the Guantanamo CSRT interview of Abdelaziz Kareem Salim al-Noofayee (ISN# 687)|
Summarized Detainee Unsworn Statement
The Tribunal President read the Hearing Instructions to the Detainee and confirmed that the Detainee understood and had no questions.
Detainee: I attended this Tribunal because I wanted to respond to these allegations I have witnesses and I posted reports. I would like to discuss them with you, the Tribunal.
Tribunal President: We're aware that you requested a document that we determined was not relevant. We received no request for witnesses.
Detainee: Yes, that is what I wanted to say, that I requested these documents and it should be in the file. I have been told already about the witnesses.
Tribunal President: Right. In just a few minutes we'll allow you to provide an oral statement as well.
'The Personal Representative presented the Detainee Election Form (Exhibit D-A) to the Tribunal.
The Recorder presented the Unclassified Summary of Evidence (Exhibit R-1) to the Tribunal.
The Recorder presented Exhibits R-1 into evidence and gave a brief description of the contents of the Unclassified Summary of Evidence (Exhibit R-1).
Detainee: Does he (the recorder) have any questions?
Tribunal President: He may have later on in the process. We'll get to that.
The Recorder confirmed that he had no further unclassified evidence or witnesses and requested a closed Tribunal session to present classified evidence.
The Tribunal President, referring to the Detainee Election Form, made the following statement:
Tribunal President: I see by the Detainee Election Form that you have elected to participate as evidenced by your being here today. I also see that you asked for a document to be produced from a hospital, referenced to show intent that you were in Pakistan to receive treatment for back illness. Based on the allegations and the unclassified summary of evidence, this request was considered not relevant. Therefore this request was denied. Abdalaziz Kareem Salim Al Noofayaee you may now present any evidence you have to this Tribunal and you have the assistance of your Personal Representative in doing so.
Detainee: I gave him (personal Representative) all of the answers to all of these allegations and he can present them.
Tribunal President: Okay. We will be more than happy to do that Would you like to take an oath, for anything else that you answer for us?
Detainee: I don't want to take the oath.
Tribunal President: Okay that is fine.
The Recorder does not administer the Muslim oath to the Detainee.
The Tribunal President opened the Tribunal to the Detainee to make his statement
Tribunal President: With the help of your Personal Representative you may begin.
Personal Representative: The detainee and I met and I'm prepared to give the detainee's statement.
3. 1. Originally from Saudi Arabia, the detainee traveled to Karachi, Pakistan in late 2001 via Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Damascus, Syria; Tehran, Iran; and Lahore, Pakistan.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): Regarding the first allegation, regarding his travels, when we met he said that I personally traveled, I went for treatment of back problems. I never went to Afghanistan, only Pakistan. I did have a passport and he wanted to say that I was already in Pakistan before the September 11th incident.
Tribunal Member: I just wanted to ask a question. Do you want the translator to literally translate to him? Did you want him to re-translate that to him?
Personal Representative: I think he should.
Translator: Can you say that again?
Detainee (via Personal Representative): I was already in Pakistan before the September 11th incident.
Personal Representative: Would he like to say more about this charge?
Detainee: I went there for the purpose of medical treatment and then I went to Lahore. You may ask me why didn't I get treated in Saudi Arabia. It is cheaper in Pakistan than it is Saudi Arabia and I can get the same treatment there.
3.2. In March 2002, the detainee was arrested by Pakistani police during a raid on the Issa guesthouse in Faisalabad, Pakistan.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): The second one talks about his arrest by the Pakistani police at the Issa guesthouse. He said that is right, I was in Pakistan before the Americans started bombing Afghanistan. When I heard the Pakistani police were starting to capture Arabs I went to that guesthouse.
Detainee: I was in Karachi when they started capturing. I went from Karachi to Lahore.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): All along I was there to get back treatment. I was at the Sinai in Karachi, Pakistan before Ramadan in 2001. Would he like to say anything more about his arrest?
Detainee: When they started arresting the Arabs in Pakistan, I tried to go to the Saudi Arabian government so I could go back, but I wanted to stay here so I could finish my medical treatment.
3.3. Several of the individuals arrested in the raid on the guesthouse in March 2002 were identified by a senior al Qaida associate.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): The third one talks about the individuals that were arrested in that guesthouse were identified by senior al Qaida associates. He said that I was in a hurry to get there (meaning the guesthouse) because the Paki sub-police were arresting Arabs. I did not know and I had no knowledge of these people at the guesthouse. He went to Lahore, before finishing his treatments to Raiwind Pakistan to see a group Tabligh to ask them for help to finish his back treatments. It was a safe place but they said at this time we cannot help you. The group Tabligh said that. So they (Tabligh group) told him to go back to Faisalabad Pakistan, to study Koran. The reason he went was to stay and find a doctor to finish his treatment. By staying at that guesthouse, it was a way for me to have a place to stay and seek treatment for my back therapy. Does he wish to say more about that?
Detainee: When I went to Faisalabad, all the people I ran into, they were learning Koran. The only thing I knew about them was they were reciting the Koran readings.
3. 4. Detainee was captured with a Casio F-91W watch, known to be used by members of al Qaida.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): Now the fourth one is talking about how he was captured with a Casio F-91W watch.
Detainee: I did not know that these watches are used by the al Qaida members. I did have a Casio watch, I'm not sure if it is the F-91W.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): He also had said something to me that the watch I had is like the watch even some of the guards here have. So does that mean that they are Taliban and al Qaida? How could I use a watch for that? I went there for treatments. Lots of people wear that watch.
3.5. The F-91W Casio watch has been associated with numerous al Qaida and radical Islamic terrorist improvised explosive devices.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): Number five talks about how that Casio watch has been associated with numerous al Qaida and radical Islamic terrorist explosive devices. When we talked his response was so many people carry that watch; they all can't be terrorist. Does he wish to say more about the watch?
Detainee: I bought that watch in Saudi Arabia before I got there.
3.6. The detainee trained at the Khalden Camp around 1997.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): The sixth one says that the detainee trained at the Khalden Camp around 1997. Not true. I never heard of this camp. This statement makes no sense to me, I was in Saudi in 1997. Does he want to mention anything else about that?
Detainee: I was in Saudi Arabia in 1997 and at that time I stayed in place until 2001.
3.7. The Khalden Camp was run by a senior al Qaida operative.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): The last one talks about that camp was run by a senior a1 Qaida Operative.
Detainee: This relates to the previous one.
Personal Representative: Yes, that's right, he's right.
Detainee (via Personal Representative): Again, he says he never bad any association with this camp at all. I was in Saudi Arabia and never heard. That's all that we have for notes, is there anything he wants to say?
Detainee: I have nothing else to add.
Tribunal President: Does that conclude your statement?
Detainee: Yes, yes that concludes my statement unless you have other questions.
Tribunal President: We may have, so thank you. Personal Representative, do you have any questions for the Detainee?
Personal Representative: No, no Ma'am. He actually answered the one question I was going to ask him in his statement. Which was, "Where did he buy his watch?'" and he answered that.
Tribunal President: Recorder, do you have any questions for the Detainee?
Recorder: No Ma'am.
Tribunal President: Do any Tribunal Members have any questions for the Detainee?
Tribunal Member's questions
- Q. Sir, how old are you?
- A. Approximately 27 or 28 years old.
- Q. What did you do in Saudi Arabia?
- A. I was a student.
- Q. Where at?
- A. Up in Taif.
- Q. What is that? Is that a University?
- A. It is not a University; it is a city.
- Q. You were a student in that city but what school?
- A. It is a school called Takeef. There were many schools I went to.
- Q. What did you study?
- A. High school education. I learned Arabic, English and mathematics.
- Q. What age did you stop going to school?
- A. I was about 18 or 19 years old.
- Q. Okay, then from the age of 19 until you left for back treatment, what did you do?
- A. I was working in the market selling vegetables and things like that.
- Q. Where did you get the vegetables from?
- A. I would buy it from supply houses and farmers, and I sold them at the market.
- Q. You supported yourself by selling vegetables at the market?
- A. Yes I was.
- Q. Have you ever held any other type of job?
- A. No I did not.
- Q. Do you have any military training?
- A. No I don't have any.
- Q. When did you start noticing that your back bothered you?
- A. I don't remember exactly but sometime in my twenties.
- Q. Was there a specific incident that caused your back problems?
- A. I believe maybe it is the cold weather.
- Q. The cold weather in Saudi Arabia?
- A. Yes it is sometimes we have cold weather.
- Q. You never had a specific injury?
- A. No I did not.
- Q. Did you ever see any doctor in Saudi Arabia concerning your back problems?
- A. Yes I did, I used to go to the pharmacy and to the hospitals.
- Q. What activity or activities bothered your back the most?
- A. I used to carry sugar or flour back on my back, huge bags on my back and the gas bottles for the barbeques.
- Q. And this bothered your back?
- A. Whenever I used to carry it, I used to feel the pain.
- Q. How about just walking for a long period of time, does that bother your back?
- A. My back was hurting when I was in Syria when I was walking.
- Q. How about when you sit for a long time? Does that bother your back at all?
- A. My back hurts me when I sit for a long time.
- Q. How long did it take you to travel from Saudi Arabia to Pakistan, how many hours?
- A. From Saudi Arabia to Pakistan?
- Q. Correct, how long did it take?
- A. One week.
- Q. Did you drive?
- A. I took a plane.
- Q. How is your back now?
- A. Now it is better, but are you asking now here in this room or in the camp?
- Q. As your sitting here today.
- A. I'm feeling fine now.
- Q. What type of treatment did you get in Pakistan for your back, if any?
- A. I was getting a back massage and they were giving me some kind of tablets. I was asked to come back to see them every two weeks. I was given some cream for my back along with some medication tablets and when I run out they asked me to come back.
- Q. So you spent a week traveling to Saudi Arabia to Pakistan so that you could get some cream for your back and a massage?
- A. There were doctors when I got to Pakistan, they advised me to change the environment that I am living in. Because it is cheaper, these people were advising in Saudi Arabia to go there it's cheaper to be treated in Pakistan and change the environment, which is Saudi Arabia
- Q. Did you work at all when you left Saudi Arabia?
- A. I did not work there, I was just waiting to get the treatment and then I would leave.
- Q. How did you support yourself?
- A. I had some money on my person.
- Q. Where did you get this money?
- A. From the market where I was selling the vegetables.
- Q. Did you travel alone?
- A. Yes I did.
- Q. How did you make your travel arrangements?
- A. I went to the airport. I asked them to reserve a seat for me and he made arrangements for me and told me when.
- Q. You didn't use a travel agency?
- A. You go where you want to purchase the ticket, that's where I went.
- Q. Did you have your passport with you when you were arrested?
- A. Yes I did.
- Q. You said you did not have any knowledge at all of any of the people that you were staying with in this guesthouse.
- A. I didn't have any knowledge.
- Q. Did you recognize any of these people?
- A. There are some of them here in the camp.
- Q. But when you first saw these people at the guesthouse, did you recognize them? Had you seen them before at the guesthouse?
- A. No I didn't recognize them.
- Q. When you first said you were a student at Takeef, what type of school is that?
- A. Arabic, English, Physics.
- Q. That's a school that's beyond high school?
- A. No this is high school.
- Q. When I first asked you what you did in Saudi Arabia you said you were a student. Why is that?
- A. Yes. I just studied there.
- Q. Didn't you just state that you stopped studying when you were 18 and 19 years old?
- A. Yes I did.
- Q. What age did you leave Saudi Arabia?
- A. I don't know how many months I've been here in Cuba.
- Q. You can't recall what age you were when you left Saudi Arabia?
- A. 26 years old. I don't remember the dates. I've been in Cuba for three years.
- Q. I take it you understand English?
- A. A little bit.
- Q. How much money did you take with you to Pakistan?
- A. 10 thousand.
- Q. 10 thousand Riyal?
- A. Riyal.
- Q. Tell me about your family. Your mother, father, your sisters and brothers.
- A. Why?
- Q. Because I would like to know.
- A. In my situation I don't like to bring my family into it.
- Q. Do you have anything to hide?
- A. I don't have anything to hide but my case is with you. My family has nothing to do with it.
- Q. These questions I ask are to make a determination whether you're an enemy combatant or not. So this could only help you.
- A. What are you going to ask about when you say tell me about your family, sister, mother, father?
- Q. What does your dad do for a living?
- A. My father is a farmer.
- Q. What about your brothers?
- A. I told that story to the interrogators. It has nothing to do with my case.
- Q. How much did you have to pay in Pakistan and Saudi Arabia to have your back treated?
- A. In Saudi Arabia it might cost me 200 Saudi Riyal. However, in Pakistan it might cost me 50 Riyal at most.
- Q. How many times did you attend the hospital in Saudi Arabia for your back?
- A. A number of times, I cannot remember.
- Q. How about in Pakistan?
- A. Four times in Pakistan, approximately. This was for a follow-up.
- Q. The name of the hospital again was Sinai?
- A. Yes it is.
- Q. They would have a record if we inquired that you were there?
- A. That is for sure.
- Q. You said that your back hurt when it was cold, what do you define as cold? Any particular temperature?
- A. Sometimes when I'm in the camp it gets a little bit cold. (Inaudible)
- Q. I'm sorry, in the what? Cab?
- A. Camp.
- Q. Oh, camp.
- A. A day or two ago it was kind of chilly out there. It affected my back.
- Q. Have you informed the medical staff here of your back problems?
- A. Yes I did, I told them,
- Q. For the record are you a Muslim?
- A. Yes I am, thank God.
- Q. Is it ever okay in your religion to lie to non-believers?
- A. What do you mean by non-believer? Can you repeat the question?
- Q. I would like to know in your religion is it okay to lie to anyone who is not a Muslim?
- A. Only in war.
- Q. Are we at war now?
- A. We are not in war; we are in detention.
- Q. You went to Pakistan for back treatments because it was cheaper or less expensive, correct?
- A. Yes I did sir.
- Q. You said it would cost two hundred riyal in Saudi Arabia but only fifty in Pakistan, is that correct?
- A. That is true.
- Q. Is that the whole reason that you went to Pakistan?
- A. Because it is cheaper there and there are also medications there that are not available in Saudi Arabia. The third reason is that I was advised to change my environment.
- Q. When you say change the environment, are you saying that is warmer in Pakistan than Saudi Arabia?
- A. In Karachi the weather is very appropriate at least for my back.
- Q. The weather is appropriate?
- A. It is not that cold. It is not that hot.
- Q. But are you saying that it is warmer in Pakistan than it is in Saudi Arabia?
- A. Yes I am.
Tribunal President's questions
- Q. You said that your travel from Saudi Arabia to Pakistan took a week and that you flew. So you would have us believe that it takes a week to fly from Saudi Arabia to Pakistan?
- A. I am confused.
- Q. So am I. When you left Saudi Arabia did you fly directly to Pakistan?
- A. In the allegations it states that I went from Saudi Arabia to Karachi to Pakistan and different cities.
- Q. That's true then?
- A. No it did take seven days. I stayed in Syria for three days. Then from Syria to Iran by bus, I was in Iran for two days. Then after that I went to Pakistan. All this travel took about a week.
- Q. You indicated earlier in your testimony that you arrived in Pakistan prior to the attacks in the United States?
- A. Yes I did.
- Q. The allegations state that you were captured in March of the following year.
- A. What did you mean by the following year?
- Q. The year after the attacks on the U.S.?
- A. That is not true.
- Q. When were you captured?
- A. I don't know, I don't remember the year exactly. I was in Pakistan when the attacks took place. I arrived there two weeks ahead of time. Then the attacks took place and seven months later they arrested me.
- Q. You stated that you had four back treatments, and that the treatments were approximately a couple weeks apart.
- A. Yes I did.
- Q. Okay, so at best that took three months. What did you do for the other four months?
- A. Three months I stayed at the house. Two to three months I stayed at the house and the month before that I stayed at the house where the Tabligh are.
- Q. For three months you stayed at the house in Faisalabad?
- A. Three months I was in Karachi then I went to Raywan for one month and then I stayed in Faisalabad for two and half months. So totally it is about six to seven months.
- Q. For the two and half months you stayed at Faisalabad you stayed at the guesthouse that they were talking about in the allegations?
- A. In Faisalabad, yes I did.
- Q. But you also stated that you didn't know anybody there for two and half months?
- A. I didn't know anybody here.
- Q. When you talk about the organization that sent you to Faisalabad, the Tabligh, is it that organization?
- A. Yes.
- Q. You said that you left with 10 thousand riyals. Did that include the price of your airline ticket as well?
- A. I spent some of that ten thousand riyal for the ticket.
- Q. How much did the ticket cost you approximately?
- A. Three thousand riyal. That covers all of my flying from Saudi Arabia to Karachi.
Tribunal President: Abdalaziz Kareem Salim Al Noofayaee do you have any other thing that you would like to present to this Tribunal today?
Detainee: I don't have any.
The Tribunal President confirmed with the Personal Representative that he had no further evidence and that the Detainee had no previously approved witnesses to present to the Tribunal.
The Tribunal President explained the remainder of the Tribunal process to the Detainee and adjourned the open session.
I certify the material contained in this transcript is a true and accurate summary of the testimony given during the proceedings.