Fife Dad opens up about “mental torture” of Iraq jail hell

A Dad from Fife who was detained in Iraq over an alleged unpaid debt has told of the “mental torture” he endured in prison where he saw rats as big as cats.
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Brian Glendinning, 43, was locked up in a Baghdad jail for 70 days after being arrested in Basra International Airport on September 4.

The construction engineer returned home to Scotland on Saturday and has opened up about his prison hell and fears he might never get over the ordeal he experienced at hands of jail staff.

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He had been contracted to work at an oil refinery but was arrested on an Interpol red notice at Baghdad Airport on September 12 over a debt owed to the Qatar National Bank.

Brian was arrested on an Interpol red notice at Baghdad AirportBrian was arrested on an Interpol red notice at Baghdad Airport
Brian was arrested on an Interpol red notice at Baghdad Airport

Recalling some of the worst moments he told campaigner Rhada Stirling: "The worst thing was the initial phone call back home to tell them that, 'by the way, I'm locked up here and I don't think I'm getting out'.

"And then when I actually managed to get hold of the official paperwork and read the words 'you were sentenced to two years in jail in Qatar in 2017 in your absence, Qatar wanted you extradited', and my world just fell apart.

"I'd already fixed in my head the phone call to Kimberley (his wife) saying, 'listen, just get on with life, I'm not going to be there, don't even bother coming out here to see me'. I

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didn't want the kids coming out here, I basically just wrote myself off then.

The 'nicer' first jailThe 'nicer' first jail
The 'nicer' first jail

The father of three said rats infested the toilets in the cell he shared, making it hard to sleep.

Describing his experiences in a podcast he said: "I looked and saw this rat run past, this thing was the size of a cat. They came out the toilet, it was just a hole in the floor.

"If you've seen Trainspotting and the toilet scene in that, it was 10 times worse, it was just rats everywhere.

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"For four nights I watched these rats all night and never slept."

Prisoners slept on the floorPrisoners slept on the floor
Prisoners slept on the floor

He was afraid to sleep for more than a couple of hours a night and now he still finds it hard to sleep.

“I can still hear the sounds of grown-men squealing in pain as the guards kicked them and whipped them with hoses.”

"The mental torture every day, it was the noise, rabble and voices, a fan, there was a generator right outside the window, the fumes coming from the generator, sore head."

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His wife was even harassed by guards who managed to get her number and they still send her messages asking her to send pictures of herself.

Brian has vowed that he will never set foot in the Middle East again and is sickened by the scenes of celebrations in Qatar as the World Cup continues.

“These countries are so corrupt. All they care about is money and being the wealthiest - Qatar in particular. That country has put me through hell. The fact the World Cup has been

allowed to be held there is sickening. I'm refusing to watch it.”

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