According to several press reports from the United Kingdom, a former Guantanamo Bay detainee known as Ronald Fiddler was one of the jihadists who helped carry out a suicide bombing in Mosul, Iraq. This event has raised a lot of questions regarding his liberation as both governments of the U.K. and the U.S. are being criticized.
An official statement published by military officials from the United States said that they cannot confirm entirely that Ronald Fiddler, also known as Jamal al-Harith and Abu-Zakariya al-Britani, the person who was behind the suicide bombing, was, in fact, a detainee of the Guantanamo Bay prison.
Mr. Fiddler videotaped himself all the way through the preparation and execution of the terrorist attack that took place outside the Iraqi base in Tal Gaysum in southwest Mosul. On Tuesday, the tape started to become viral among terrorist groups’ online media and forums.
According to Col. John Dorrian, the top U.S. spokesman in Iraq, the American intelligence has not been able to identify Mr. Fiddler as a former detainee of the Guantanamo Bay prison, as they continue to investigate all the allegations made by British media in the past hours.
The London Daily Mail allegations
According to an exclusive press report that the British portal published this Wednesday, the British government paid Mr. Fiddler over £1 million in compensation after being freed from Guantanamo Bay. In the report, it’s explained how Fiddler received his compensation in 2004, the year after being released from captivity, as other four ex-prisoners might have received similar money grants.
In the report, it’s explained how Fiddler received his compensation in 2004, the year after being released, as other four ex-prisoners might have received similar money grants.
In an official statement from Mr. Fiddler’s family, they denied categorically that their relative received any amount of money from the British government. In the declaration, they said that they wanted to express their sorrow and distress after the news of Fiddler’s death, as they were concerned about the reports they were getting from the press about his life.
“The Jamal they knew up until 2001 when he was taken to Guantanamo Bay would not have become involved with a despicable organization such as so-called Islamic State. He was a peaceful and gentle person,” the statement reads. “Whatever he may or may not have done since then they believe from their experience he was utterly changed by the physical and mental cruelty and the inhumane treatment he endured for two years at Guantanamo.”
In this issue, former Primer Minister of the U.K., Tony Blair, released an official statement. He qualified the London Daily Mail as “utter hypocrisy” after the site published a report called “Still Think He Wasn’t A Danger, Mr. Blair? Fury at Labour government’s £1M compensation for innocent Brit.”
Blair explained how after the release of Fiddler in 2004, the media had started a massive campaign (led by the Daily Mail) that wanted to discredit his government’s actions, all supported by Conservative Opposition. He concluded by saying that “He (Fiddler) was not paid compensation by my government. The settlement was agreed in 2010 by the [coalition] government.”
However, the Daily Mail argued that even when the actions were taken under the demands of the coalition government, “the fact remains that the actions which led to this payment were all the responsibility of Tony Blair.”