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Europe rights body endorses rendition report as officials call for legal safeguards

[JURIST] The Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly [official website] on Tuesday passed a resolution [draft text] adopting the report [PDF text] of Swiss legislator Dick Marty accusing European countries of colluding with the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in transporting terror suspects in a "global spider's web" [COE graphic] of secret prisons and rendition flights. The Assembly also called for "clear regulations" [press release] to govern the operation of foreign intelligence services in Europe, for member states to review their bilateral agreements with the US to ensure they comply with international human rights norms, and for "an international initiative, expressly involving the United States, to develop a common, truly global strategy to address the terrorist threat which conforms to democracy, human rights and the rule of law." Marty headed the Council of Europe's investigation into alleged secret detention centers [COE materials] and illegal rendition flights [JURIST news archive] operated by the CIA in Europe, and in his report, Marty said that 14 European countries collaborated with the CIA [JURIST report] by taking an active or passive role in a network of prisons and rendition flights.

Also at the COE Tuesday, EU Justice Commissioner Franco Frattini [official website] acknowledged that terror suspects had been transferred to US custody on European territory [VOA report], but said that he did not know whether those transfers were legal. Frattini said that European countries should conduct national investigations [AP report] into the allegations and said that legal safeguards to protect against illegal renditions need to be strengthened. BBC News has more.

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