The Arabist

The Arabist

By Issandr El Amrani and friends.

CoE report documents rendition program

More fine reporting by Stephen Grey, who literally wrote the book on rendition, about the upcoming Council of Europe findings on the CIA flights in Europe:

Although suspicions about the secret CIA prisons have existed for more than a year, the council's report, seen by the Guardian, appears to offer the first concrete evidence. It also details the prisons' operations and the identities of some of the prisoners.

The council has also established that within weeks of the 9/11 attacks, Nato signed an agreement with the US that allowed civilian jets used by the CIA during its so-called extraordinary rendition programme to move across member states' airspace. Its report states: "We have sufficient grounds to declare that the highest state authorities were aware of the CIA's illegal activities on their territories." The council's investigators believe that agreement may have been illegal.

. . .

The 19-month inquiry by the council, which promotes human rights across Europe, was headed by Dick Marty, a Swiss senator and former state prosecutor. He said: "What was previously just a set of allegations is now proven: large numbers of people have been abducted from various locations across the world and transferred to countries where they have been persecuted and where it is known that torture is common practice."

His report says there is "now enough evidence to state that secret detention facilities run by the CIA [existed] in Europe from 2003 to 2005, in particular in Poland and Romania".
Yet another reason I think the EU should have never expanded to include Eastern European countries.

Update: Also see HRW's backgrounder on U.S. Responsibility for Enforced Disappearances in the “War on Terror”.