The world at a glance . . . Europe
ParisA rich lot: Art and antiques belonging to the late fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent sold this week for tens of millions of dollars more than auctioneers had expected. One Matisse painting, Les coucous, tapis bleu et rose, went for more than $45 million, double Christie’s estimate of its value. A Brancusi sculpture previously valued at $26 million sold for $37 million. The works and lush furnishings primarily came from the opulent Paris apartment where Saint Laurent lived with his civil-union partner, Pierre Bergé. “You don’t often walk into a house like this,” said Christie’s Vice President Jonathan Rendell, “and I’ve been doing this for a very long time.” Proceeds from the auction will go to a foundation dedicated to AIDS research.
LondonDetainee tells of torture: A British resident released from the prison at Guantánamo Bay issued a statement this week claiming that he was “tortured in medieval ways, all orchestrated by the United States government.” Binyam Mohamed, an Ethiopian who had emigrated to Britain in 1994, was arrested in Pakistan in 2002 and turned over to U.S. authorities, who accused him of plotting terrorist attacks. He said he was held in prisons in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Morocco, where he said interrogators repeatedly cut his penis and chest with razors. He was transferred to Guantánamo in 2004. “I am not asking for vengeance,” Mohamed said, “only that the truth should be made known.” U.S. officials deny having taken Mohamed to Morocco and have repeatedly denied torturing detainees.