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Spain says CIA rendition flights may have used Spanish airports

[JURIST] Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Angel Moratinos [official profile, in Spanish; Euroresidentes profile] acknowledged Thursday that US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) [official website] planes transporting detainees to secret prisons [JURIST news archive] in Europe may have stopped over on its soil. Moratinos told a European Parliament committee that although the US had assured Spain that no suspects were aboard the planes, the islands of Palma de Mallorca and Tenerife "may have been used not to commit crimes on it but as a stopover on the way to committing crime in another country." The Spanish government is investigating 60 suspected flights [JURIST report] that passed through the islands. Last fall, a similar investigation [JURIST report] led to the conclusion that such flights were legal [JURIST report].

Investigation into CIA rendition flights [JURIST news archive] and criticism of the CIA has been widespread in Europe since President Bush acknowledged the existence of secret prisons [JURIST report] for the first time last week. Moratinos plans to urge other European leaders to speak out [EU Observer report] against the operation of such prisons at a foreign affairs meeting on Friday. BBC News has more.

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