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Habib ‘security threat’ case: intelligence agencies evidence on home phone calls, discredited: calls were made three weeks, after Habib arrested

Posted by gmarkets on 3 September, 2007

Holes had emerged in the evidence Australian Intelligence agencies relied on to paint former Guantanamo Bay detainee Mamdouh Habib as a national security threat, wrote Natalie O’Brien in The Australian (3/9/2007, p.1). Phone-calls not possible: Authorities had cited phone calls made by a US terrorist to Habib’s Sydney home in 1993 to bolster their case against him. But The Australian has learned the terrorist could not have made the calls, which phone records revealed were made after he was arrested over the 1993 bomb attack on New York’s World Trade Centre. The two calls – from a New Jersey phone number linked to the convicted terrorist Ibrahim El-Gabrowny – were made nearly three weeks after he had been arrested.

US bombing: It was understood that the records of the call formed part of the reason Habib was considered a security threat. But the latest revelations backed up claims made by Habib that the calls were faxes about fundraising activities sent to him by other members of the New Jersey Muslim community with access to the same phone. The World Trade Centre was attacked for the first time on 26 February 1993, and El-Gabrowny was arrested on March 4 along with several other men.

Trying to clear his name: The Australian has established that the two calls to Habib’s home in 1993 were made on March 20 and 21, while El-Gabrowny was still in custody. The Australian was investigating the basis of the allegations that Habib was a national security threat, as the Sydney father of four attempte to clear his name and regain his Australian passport. Habib was also suing the Federal Government for damages over his detention in Egypt and at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba, where he was held as a terror suspect for three years without being charged.

The Australian, 3/9/2007, p. 1


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