U.S. to protest Emirates’ treatment of American

The U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi plans to protest the alleged mistreatment of a U.S. citizen who has been imprisoned in the United Arab Emirates since Aug. 29, the ACLU of Southern California said Friday.

Naji Hamdan, a former Hawthorne resident, was held for three months in state security custody before being transferred to a local prison and charged with a terrorism-related offense. Hamdan says he was tortured and interrogated while in state security custody.

In an e-mail to the American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California, Consul Sean Cooper wrote, “As the UAE government returns to work next week, we will engage them on this most serious matter.” Cooper, according to the ACLU, has met with Hamdan three times.

The ACLU alleges that Hamdan was detained at the behest of the U.S. government. The ACLU sued the government in November seeking his release.

Hamdan said several of his interrogators spoke American-accented English and knew information about his behavior during a prior interrogation by FBI agents at the U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi, according to the ACLU.