London, May 6 (ANI): Britain's MI5 secretly tried to hire British men held in Guantanamo Bay and other US prison camps by promising to protect them from their American captors and help secure their return home to the United Kingdom, The Independent has learnt.
One of the men, Richard Belmar, was told he would be paid "well" for his services if he was willing to work undercover for MI5.
A second detainee, Bisher Al Rawi, was told that if he agreed to work for the security service he would be "freed within months".
Three other detainees were threatened with rendition and harsh detention regimes if they did not co-operate with their British and American interrogators.
But MI5 failed to honour the promises made by its agents, a former agent has told The Independent.
The source, who is close to the MI5 officers who conducted the interviews, has confirmed that "assurances" had been given to the British men while they were held in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay.
He said that senior officers in London had cleared the actions of its own officers but later reneged on the promises. This is backed up by sworn testimony lodged in the High Court from the former detainees.
The clandestine recruitment operation was being pursued at the same time that the British Government was supporting American claims that those held at the notorious US naval base represented a serious threat to world security.
All five men, and two other former Guantanamo detainees, are seeking compensation from the Foreign Office, the Home Office, MI5 and MI6 and the Attorney General. (ANI)