Belgium ordered to pay €100,000 in damages for the extradition of a terrorist to the United States – POLITICO

Belgium must pay around €100,000 compensation to convicted terrorist Nizar Trabelsi for the damage he suffered as a result of his extradition to the United States, a Brussels appeal court ruled on Tuesday.

The court also ruled that the Belgian government should ask US authorities to fire Trabelsi.

Trabelsi, a former Tunisian professional footballer, was convicted in Belgium in 2003 for planning to attack the Kleine-Brogel air base, where the American military is based. He was sentenced to 10 years in prison, which he served, then Belgium extradited him to the United States, despite the decision of the European Court of Human Rights not to send him overseas. Atlantic. According to the United States, Trabelsi met with al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden shortly before the September 2001 attacks on the United States.

Trabelsi has now spent nearly a decade in US custody. According to a report by a special envoy to the United Nations cited by local media, he is being held in solitary confinement, with no daylight in his cell and with artificial lights on 24 hours a day. The report also states that he is not receiving proper care and medication.

The Brussels Court of Appeal ordered the Belgian state to pay a sum of €10,000 per year which Trabelsi spent in an American prison, making a total of nearly €100,000.

Trabelsi’s lawyer, Christophe Marchand, said he was satisfied with Tuesday’s court ruling, saying « we are convinced that if Belgium sends a note to the United States, it will be impossible to keep him in an American prison. « .

A spokesman for the justice minister said authorities were « carefully studying the judgment to determine next steps. »

In 2016, the Belgian State was ordered to pay €78,000 in damages to Trabelsi and his family because of the extradition.

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