A Frenchman of Pakistani origin who was detained in New York for five months without charge after the September 11, 2001 attacks is suing US authorities, a French newspaper reported today.

Asif Safi, a 40-year-old from France’s Indian Ocean island of Reunion, said a visa problem led to him being arrested as a suspected terrorist on September 30, 2001 while returning from a trip to Canada, the Quotidien de la Reunion newspaper said.

He claims to suffer emotional and psychological trauma from the episode, which saw him locked up with other suspects of Arab or Muslim background in a Brooklyn jail, where he said he suffered physical and verbal abuse according to the lawsuit prepared by a US group, the Centre for Constitutional Rights (CCR).

The document claimed FBI agents stomped on Safi’s feet, twisted his thumbs, beat him and threw him so violently against a wall he lost consciousness, the newspaper said..


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