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Italy denies involvement in 2003 CIA kidnapping of Egyptian cleric in Milan

[JURIST] The Italian newspaper La Repubblica [website, in Italian] reported Thursday that an Italian policeman has confessed to participating in the 2003 kidnapping of an Egyptian cleric [JURIST report] from the streets of Milan. The Italian government responded by denying any involvement in the abduction, and prosecutors say the Italian government is not under investigation.

Last December, an Italian judge issued European arrest warrants [JURIST report] for the 22 CIA operatives accused of participating in the kidnapping and subsequent rendition. The victim, Osama Moustafa Hassan Nasr [Wikipedia profile], is a suspected member of an Islamic military group who has said that he was flown by the CIA to Egypt, where he claims he was abused [JURIST report] and tortured. An Italian judge ruled last November that the CIA's former Milan station chief will be prosecuted [JURIST report] in the case, having forsaken his diplomatic immunity by leaving his post, but in April outgoing Italian Justice Minister Roberto Castelli said the Italian government would not validate Milan prosecutor Armando Spataro's request [JURIST report] to extradite the 22 CIA personnel from the US. US authorities have consistently declined to comment on the case. Reuters has more.

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