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Rights groups sue Rumsfeld over prisoner abuses

[JURIST] The American Civil Liberties Union and Human Rights First [advocacy websites] announced at a press conference Tuesday morning that they had filed a lawsuit in Illinois against US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld [official profile] and several other US military officials on behalf of eight former detainees [ACLU profiles] who claim they were tortured and abused by US personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan. The suit asserts that Rumsfeld bears direct responsibility for abuses and that his actions violated the US Constitution, federal statutes and international law. A similar suit against Rumsfeld was brought in Germany, but a German prosecutor later dismissed the complaint [JURIST report]. Read the complaints against Rumsfeld [text, PDF], Col. Thomas Pappas [text, PDF], Brig. Gen. Janis Karpinski [text, PDF] and Lt. Gen. Ricardo Sanchez [text, PDF]. Read the ACLU and HRF press release. More on the suit is available from the ACLU [lawsuit website] and HRF [lawsuit website]. Reuters has more.

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