WASHINGTON, April 27 (Xinhua) -- The Pentagon said
Friday that it is holding a major al Qaida figure at the detention facility in
the U.S. naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The man, Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi, had been in CIA
custody before being transferred to Guantanamo, according to a statement issued
by the Pentagon.
It said al-Hadi "was one of al Qaida's
highest-ranking and experienced senior operatives at the time of his detention,"
with alias as Nashwan Abd al-Razzaq Abd al-Baqi.
U.S. intelligence sources said he came into CIA
custody last year, after President George W. Bush's speech on the agency's
program of interrogating high value-prisoners in September 2006.
At that time, Bush said, there were "no terrorists"
presently in the CIA program.
U.S. officials said al-Hadi's detention is
"significant," saying he has "provided information on al Qaida presence in a
number of countries" while he was in CIA custody.
He also provided insights "into command and control
operations and planning."
Al-Hadi was Born in 1961 in Mosul, Iraq, and joined
al Qaida late in the last decade.
He was allegedly "known and trusted" by Osama bin
Laden, al Qaida's leader, and Ayman al-Zawahri, its No. 2 man, and "interacted
with other senior al Qaida planners and decision-makers."
At present, some 385 prisoners are held in