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Thursday, September 11, 2008

Al Qaeda Suspect Aafia Siddiqi Diagnosed With Depressive Psychosis

By J.M. Berger

Al Qaeda suspect Aafia Siddiqui has been diagnosed with depressive psychosis, a disorder which has been used in the past in arguments over whether a defendant is competent to stand trial.

A court-appointed doctor evaluated Siddiqui as suffering from Axis I diagnosis of Depressive Type Psychosis.

During the initial interview, Siddiqui "reported depressed mood, anxiety and ruminative thoughts concerning her son's welfare; poor sleep; and moderate appetite," according to court documents.

During a second interview, Siddiqui "spoke through a blanket she had placed over her body, including her face," according to court records. "She politely reported that she did not wish to speak wth a psychiatrist or a psychologist. She also reported that she did not wish to be medically examined, stating, 'I'm fine; no one cares about me here.'"

9/3/2008: Letter to the court describing Aafia Siddiqui arrest and treatment in detention, injuries, strip-search issues

9/11/2008: Psychiatric Evaluation of Aafia Siddiqui

Depressive Type Psychosis can involve suicidal thoughts and behavior, confusion and delusions. The diagnosis has some history as a basis for a defendant to be declared unfit to stand trial. It is not immediately clear how much of a factor that will be for Siddiqui's defense team.

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INTELWIRE is a web site edited by J.M. Berger. a researcher, analyst and consultant covering extremism, with a special focus on extremist activities in the U.S. and extremist use of social media. He is a non-resident fellow with the Brookings Institution, Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World, and author of the critically acclaimed Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam, the only definitive history of the U.S. jihadist movement, and co-author of ISIS: The State of Terror with Jessica Stern.


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