Former Gitmo detainee David Hicks heckles Australian attorney-general at awards ceremony
"Hey, my name is David Hicks!" he shouted, as Brandis gave his closing remarks at the ceremony on Wednesday evening.
"I was tortured for five-and-a-half years in Guantanamo Bay in the full knowledge of your party! What do you have to say?"
Hicks told reporters that Brandis, who has been a Liberal member of the Australian Senate since May 2000, was a "coward" for not responding to him.
"He's run away," he told the media. "It's too late, he's gone."
David Hicks is an Australian citizen who was convicted by the US Guantanamo military commission on charges of aiding and abetting terrorists and held at the facility from 2001 until 2007. His story has attracted much attention due to his claims that he was tortured and held under what many consider to be unlawful conditions at Guantanamo Bay.
In 2010, Hicks released a book entitled, “Guantanamo: My Journey,” in which he remarked that it was the first time he had an opportunity to tell his side of the story.
This week, the Senate Intelligence Committee released its executive summary on the CIA’s use of torture against suspected Al-Qaeda members detained at ‘black sites’ in secret locations in Europe and Asia.
In the course of the human rights award ceremony, Senator Brandis mentioned that all child refugees being detained on Christmas Island - an Australian territory where refugees often make landfall – would be released before Christmas.