For Immediate Release
Reprieve's London office can be contacted on: communications [at] reprieve.org.uk / +44 (0) 207 553 8140. Reprieve US, based in New York City, can be contacted on Katherine [dot] oshea [at] reprieve.org
CIA Torture Report: Reprieve US Calls for Three Concrete Steps Towards Reconciliation with Victims
WASHINGTON - The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) will tomorrow vote on whether to declassify their report on the CIA’s unlawful torture program – a program which, in the words of Senator Dianne Feinstein, “should never have existed.”
Reprieve applauds the SSCI for pursuing this far-reaching investigation into the CIA’s mistakes, and for resisting the Agency's attempts to suppress the report's findings.
The Committee's release of the report's Executive Summary would mark the first concrete step towards justice for CIA torture victims. Reprieve is also calling for the following steps, to ensure that we learn from our mistakes and begin reconciliation with those who have been abused in our name:
1) The White House must declassify the Executive Summary
The American people must understand why the CIA's use of torture was illegal, unnecessary and counter-productive. We cannot learn from history unless we know what it is.
2) Congress and the White House must declassify the full report
Reprieve has long represented CIA torture victims who have been deliberately and unfairly discredited by years of the Agency's lies. These men and their families deserve the full truth about their ordeal to be revealed.
The declassified report must include details of every single victim, and facilitate the pursuit of justice for those men still suffering in US detention. In particular, Reprieve anticipates learning more about the abuse of our clients Abu Zubaydah, Ahmed Rabbani and Shaker Aamer, who remain incarcerated without charge or trial in Guantanamo Bay.
3) The US government must apologize unreservedly to those tortured in our name.
As the world's greatest proponent of democracy and justice, we can no longer afford to turn a blind eye to serious crimes committed on our behalf.
Reprieve US Counsel Alka Pradhan said: “The CIA’s deceit regarding their torture of detainees – and their false claims that their interrogations produced useful intelligence – is now widely known. The White House now stands at the crossroads between transparency and justice, or continued secrecy and complicity. In order to close this shameful chapter in U.S. history, President Obama must now declassify the Executive Summary and the full report."
Notes to Editors
1. Reprieve US opened in New York City in February 2014. A partner organization to Reprieve UK, Reprieve US provides advocacy and litigation aimed at stopping abuses in the death penalty and in counter-terrorism.
For information about the work of Reprieve US please visit reprieve.org or contact Katherine O’Shea on firstname.lastname@example.org or +1 917 855 8064.
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Reprieve is a UK-based human rights organization that uses the law to enforce the human rights of prisoners, from death row to Guantánamo Bay.