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UN torture investigator criticizes US detainee bill

[JURIST] UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Manfred Nowak [official profile, DOC; JURIST news archive] said Friday that the military commissions bill [JURIST news archive] approved [JURIST report] by the US Senate Thursday could lead to abuses because it does not sufficiently constrain harsh interrogation methods and strips detainees of the ability to challenge their imprisonment through habeas corpus petitions. Speaking to Reuters, Nowak criticized the failure of the proposed legislation, which still has be passed by the US House of Representatives, to incorporate repeatedly-articulated concerns of the UN and the international community.

Several human rights groups have also voiced disapproval of the measure already, including Amnesty International [advocacy website], which has accused lawmakers [press release] of "put[ting] the American people through a maze that led to a faulty policy and, in the process, lost a little more of its standing with the global community and the American public." Reuters has more.

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