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EU panel says CIA 'directly responsible' for illegal detentions, rendition in Europe

[JURIST] A European Parliament [official website] committee [official website] approved a report Monday that supports allegations that the US Central Intelligence Agency [official website] was "directly responsible for the illegal seizure, removal, abduction and detention of terrorist suspects" in Europe. The report [draft text, PDF], organized by committee rapporteur Giovanni Claudio Fava [official profile], passed by a vote of 25 members in favor of the text, 14 against, and seven abstentions. Almost 200 amendments were debated before the final version was approved, including one that called for governments of the European Union [official website] to take a greater stand in supporting the closure of the US prison camp at Guantanamo Bay [JURIST news archive]. Fava reported to the committee in April that the CIA used extraordinary rendition [JURIST news archive] to kidnap terror suspects in Europe and transfer them to countries known to use torture and has operated over 1,000 secret flights in European territory [JURIST report].

The European Parliament report comes to similar conclusions as those in the report [PDF text] released [JURIST report] by the Council of Europe [official website] last week. The committee based its findings on interviews of alleged victims and rights groups. While the European Parliament has no legal power over the US, it does have the authority to recommend political sanctions against any involved countries, including the US. The report will go before a session of the entire European Parliament in July. Reuters has more.

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