54 countries have helped CIA renditions

2013-02-05 21:45
(Picture: <a href="http://www.shutterstock.com">Shutterstock</a>)

(Picture: Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - Fifty-four foreign governments assisted the CIA in a global campaign that included harsh interrogations of suspects, a rights advocacy group said on Tuesday, as it pressed for greater accountability.

The report by Open Society Foundations marks the most comprehensive list of countries that helped the US in what critics saw as excesses by then president George W Bush's administration after the 9/11 attacks.

Bush authorised "extraordinary rendition" - the transferring of individuals without legal process - to allow US and foreign intelligence agencies to interrogate alleged extremists outside the protections ensured on US soil.

The Open Society Foundations found evidence that 54 foreign governments supported the system by actions such as hosting CIA prisons, interrogating suspects, allowing airspace for secret flights or providing intelligence.

Many of the cases involve countries that have long fought Islamic militants on their home territory such as Afghanistan, Egypt, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia.

The report also listed close US allies such as Australia, Britain, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and Thailand.

South Africa was listed in part due to allegations the Pretoria government gave US intelligence the green light in 2003 to abduct Saud Memon, a Pakistani suspected in the slaying of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.

Memon died shortly after his release in Pakistan in 2007.

The study also listed Iran, saying that despite poor relations with the US, Tehran indirectly handed over at least 10 suspects - mostly Arabs - to US custody via the Kabul government.

The report called for accountability both in the US and overseas, saying there was "no doubt" that Bush administration officials authorised what it called human rights violations.

"By engaging in torture and other abuses associated with secret detention and extraordinary rendition, the US government violated domestic and international law, thereby diminishing its moral standing and eroding support for its counter-terrorism efforts worldwide," the report said.

But it said that other nations also bore responsibility. Only Canada has apologised for its role, while three other countries - Australia, Britain and Sweden - have also offered compensation to individuals.


President Barack Obama ordered an end to harsh interrogations when he took office in 2009.

But the Open Society Foundations criticised Obama for still allowing renditions if other countries promise to treat prisoners humanely.

The group named 136 individuals subjected to extraordinary detention and rendition.

As the report focused on secret CIA operations, it did not cover the Pentagon's controversial detention of prisoners in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The CIA kept some prisoners in Guantanamo Bay and also secretly held detainees in Afghanistan, Lithuania, Morocco, Poland, Romania and Thailand, the report said.

In detention, some prisoners were thrown against fake walls, forced into stressful physical functions, involuntarily stripped naked and slapped, the report said.

Former CIA chief Michael Hayden has previously confirmed that the US interrogators subjected three men to waterboarding, a drowning simulation that rights advocates consider to be torture.

The US senate committee on intelligence in December approved a 6 000-page report on the CIA tactics.

While the contents are classified, Senator Dianne Feinstein, the committee's chairperson, said that secret detention sites and harsh interrogation were "terrible mistakes”.

The CIA declined comment on the report.

Some lawmakers and intelligence professionals have vigorously defended "enhanced interrogation techniques" as necessary against a ruthless enemy.

Hayden, speaking at a think tank last month, recalled telling European ambassadors in 2007 when he was CIA director: "We're at war with al-Qaeda and its affiliates, this war is global in scope, and my moral and legal responsibility is to take that fight to this enemy wherever they may be."

The Open Society Foundations were founded by George Soros, the billionaire liberal philanthropist.

Read more on:    al-qaeda  |  cia  |  george w bush  |  barack obama  |  us  |  human rights

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


Zuma: Pray for peaceful polls

President Jacob Zuma has asked members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God to pray for peaceful elections on 7 May.


Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
  • Friday Grabouw - 11:32 AM
    Road name: N2 Eastbound
    DELAYS between Sir Lowrys Pass and Grabouw
  • Friday Cape Town - 10:14 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
More traffic reports...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Nokia Lumia 800

The stunningly social Nokia Lumia 800 features head-turning design, ...

From R2395.00

I'm shopping for:


Self-indulgence may be strong today. You may want to enjoy yourself to the fullest and share it with those that make you feel...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.