For Immediate Release
CCR Legal Director Says Criminal Prosecutions Must Follow Senate CIA Torture Report Findings
NEW YORK - Based on early reports on the release of the executive summary and the conclusions and findings of the Senate inquiry into the CIA’s post-9/11 torture program, Center for Constitutional Rights Legal Director Baher Azmy issued the statement below.
Attorneys at the Center for Constitutional Rights have represented survivors of the CIA torture program, including Majid Khan, and Abu Zubaydah. The Center also represents extraordinary rendition victim Maher Arar, and Mohammed al-Qahtani, victim of the Pentagon’s “First Special Interrogation Plan” at Guantanamo, a regime of “aggressive interrogation techniques” amounting to torture. In addition, the Center for Constitutional Rights has filed and joined several cases against the architects of the U.S. torture program, including President Bush and former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, under the laws of universal jurisdiction in Spain, Switzerland, Germany and Canada. Said Mr. Azmy:
The long-delayed Senate report proves what we have been saying since 2006: that the CIA engaged in a sophisticated program of state-sanctioned torture, notable for its elaborate planning and ruthless application. We have witnessed firsthand the devastating human consequences in meetings with our clients at Guantanamo. The report also exposes the CIA’s lies about how the program operated and the utility of the information obtained: False claims about the usefulness of that information were used to justify and cover up monstrous crimes. We renew our demand for accountability for those individuals responsible for the CIA torture program. They should be prosecuted in U.S. courts; and if our government continues to refuse to hold them accountable, they must be pursued internationally under the principles of universal jurisdiction.
The Center for Constitutional Rights is dedicated to advancing and protecting the rights guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Founded in 1966 by attorneys who represented civil rights movements in the South, CCR is a non-profit legal and educational organization committed to the creative use of law as a positive force for social change.