"WASHINGTON (AP) -- A Kuwaiti-born German citizen, who claims the CIA kidnapped and tortured him, recounted his story Wednesday on Capitol Hill.
Khaled el-Masri said he wants to help prevent others from suffering a similar fate and to encourage greater oversight of CIA activities.
He wants the U.S. government to acknowledge what happened to him.
"I really want to raise awareness in the Congress so that they can bring some pressure to bear and make changes," el-Masri said in German after he briefed Senate aides.
El-Masri's lawyers urged judges in federal appeals court in Richmond, Virginia, to reinstate his lawsuit against former CIA Director George Tenet and others.
Discussing the case, el-Masri told reporters, "What really matters to me is that I would like to know why this was done to me, and I want an explanation and an apology."
He added, "I think that we can all benefit from what happens in my case, including others who are still in prison in other parts of the world without the rule of law."
El-Masri alleges he was kidnapped while trying to enter Macedonia for a vacation on December 31, 2003.
He claims he was flown to a CIA-run prison known as the "salt pit" in Kabul, Afghanistan, where he was beaten and sodomized with an object during five months in captivity.
"The conditions that I was confronted with were not fit for a human," he told reporters.
He said his food was barely edible and the water putrid.
"It was like water you left in an aquarium for years," he said. "When you took one sip, the taste stayed in your mouth for hours."
The CIA has refused to comment on el-Masri's allegations, which have put a spotlight on the intelligence agency's secret program to deliver suspected terrorists for interrogation in foreign countries.
The practice has been heavily criticized by human rights groups.
El-Masri's suit was dismissed in May when a judge ruled that a trial could harm national security by revealing details about CIA activities.
El-Masri said that despite the setback, he had confidence in the courts and the U.S. justice system.
He previously was denied entry into the United States when he arrived to publicize the suit last year, according to the American Civil Liberties Union. The ACLU has supported his case.
El-Masri was recently issued a visa."
If you're not familiar with this case, read here:
Edited by spy1, 02 December 2006 - 12:33 PM.