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A Navy guard patrols Camp Delta?s detainee recreation yard during the early morning at Guantanamo Bay naval base in a July 7, 2010 file photo provided by the US Army. President Barack Obama urged lawmakers on Tuesday to give his plan to close the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, a "fair hearing" and said he did not want to pass the issue to his successor when he leaves the White House next year. REUTERS/U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Michael R. Holzworth/US Army/Handout via Reuters FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY. IT IS DISTRIBUTED, EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS - TM3EC2N0XDD01

Court calls U.S. ‘enhanced interrogation techniques’ torture

SAN FRANCISCO — A federal court in San Francisco has taken the unusual step of using the word “torture” to describe the treatment of a Palestinian man while he was in CIA custody following the Sept. 11 attacks.

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals used the word in a 2-1 ruling to describe the harsh interrogation methods used against a prisoner known as Abu Zubaydah while he was held in clandestine CIA detention facilities overseas.

Zubaydah has been held without charge since September 2006 at the detention center on the U.S. base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

WATCH: Gina Haspel vows never to resume CIA interrogation as Senate presses her on moral code

His lawyers were seeking depositions from two private contractors who designed the CIA interrogation program. The Ninth Circuit ruling said the two contractors could face limited questioning.

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