The Supreme Court on Monday said it would take up a request by a Guantánamo Bay terrorism suspect for more information about his CIA-sponsored torture, a disclosure the U.S. government opposes, calling it a threat to national security.

The prisoner is Abu Zubaida, once a prized capture whose torture after the 9/11 terrorist attacks has been extensively documented. But the government has invoked the “state secrets” privilege to oppose his efforts for additional information about foreign intelligence officials who partnered with the CIA in detention facilities abroad.

The government already has declassified vast amounts of information about Abu Zubaida, whose birth name is Zayn al-Abidin Muhammed Hussein and whose closeness to Osama bin Laden, the deceased founder of al-Qaeda, is now questioned.

But he and his attorney have asked for more disclosure and to question two CIA contractors, James Mitchell and John Jessen, about the interrogations. Abu Zubaida wants the information because he has intervened, through his attorneys, in a Polish investigation of the CIA’s conduct in that country, where he was once held.

His request was opposed by then-CIA director Mike Pompeo, who said the disclosure “reasonably could be expected to cause serious, and in many instances, exceptionally grave damage to U.S. national security.”

Pompeo said the CIA should not be forced to officially acknowledge its partners, because “if the CIA appears unable or unwilling to keep its clandestine liaison relationships secret, relationships with other foreign intelligence or security services could be jeopardized.”

A district judge dismissed the case, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit said the judge had not done enough work to disentangle the privileged information from what could be released publicly, especially since so much already is known about Abu Zubaida.

President George W. Bush described Abu Zubaida in 2002 as “al-Qaeda’s chief of operations.” But intelligence, military and law enforcement sources told The Washington Post in 2009 that officials later concluded he was a Pakistan-based “fixer” for radical Islamist ideologues, not a formal member of al-Qaeda, much less one of its leaders.

Abu Zubaida told a 2007 panel of military officers at the detention facility in Cuba that “doctors told me that I nearly died four times” and that he endured “months of suffering and torture” on the false premise that he was an al-Qaeda leader.

Abu Zubaida, now 50, was subjected 83 times to waterboarding, a technique that leads victims to believe they are drowning and that has been widely condemned as torture. The Palestinian was captured in Pakistan in March 2002.

A panel of the 9th Circuit ruled 2 to 1 that a district judge did not complete all of the steps needed before deciding whether the government could invoke the state-secrets privilege on Abu Zubaida’s request. Specifically, the panel said the judge had failed to determine “whether the contested materials contain nonprivileged information and, if so, whether there is any feasible way to segregate the nonprivileged information from the privileged information.”

The government asked the entire 9th Circuit for a rehearing but was rejected in a narrow vote.

Judge Richard Paez said that the panel decision does not require the government to disclose anything at this point, nor does it “compel the government to confirm or even acknowledge any alleged malfeasance abroad.”

But he said the government’s blanket opposition does not acknowledge the amount already known about Abu Zubaida.

“Good grief, the President of Poland publicly acknowledged in 2012 that, during his presidency, Abu Zubaydah was detained in Poland by the CIA,” Paez wrote, using an alternative spelling of Zubaida’s nom de guerre that routinely appears in court files.

He added: “Some facts can be embarrassing to the government. . . . The purpose of the state secrets privilege, however, is not to insulate the government from criticism: the fundamental threshold question is whether certain facts are secrets. Only then can the privilege possibly apply.”

Judge Daniel Aaron Bress wrote for the dissenters, saying the majority who refused to rehear the case “treats information that is core state secrets material as fair game” and “vitiates the state secrets privilege because of information that is supposedly in the public domain.”

It was especially concerning, Bress wrote, that the information sought is intended for a criminal investigation in a foreign country.

“Our deference to the Executive Branch is not unyielding, but when it comes to the sorts of counterintelligence and counterterrorism issues presented here, courts must recognize that their field of vision is limited,” Bress wrote. “Such deference is not an abdication of judicial duty, but reflects a justified appreciation for the constitutional and national security considerations that a request like Abu Zubaydah’s necessarily implicates.”

The case is United States v. Zubaydah.